Beaver Dam head coach Bob McIntyre calls it “boring golf.”
Try telling that to Kendra Swanson.
The junior on the Golden Beavers’ prep girls golf team heeded her coach’s advice to, in his words, “play a little smarter,” and the results were as exciting as they come.
Swanson rebounded from a double bogey on the par-4 second hole at Old Hickory to post a personal low 1-over-par 37, finishing as medalist by six strokes while helping BD very nearly upset Waunakee in a 183-188 loss Wednesday afternoon that decided the Badger North Conference dual meet champion.
The Warriors, who received honorable mention in this week’s Golf Coaches Association of Wisconsin state rankings, finish with a perfect 6-0 record while the Golden Beavers end at 5-1. Beaver Dam can still claim a share of the overall championship by winning Tuesday’s Badger Conference tournament; the Beavers can earn the title outright with a win and a third-place or worse finish by Waunakee.
A bit of the sting for BD on Wednesday was relieved by Swanson’s performance. She bested her personal low round by one stroke, though that came this summer — her best effort in high school action had been a 43.
“I’ve been waiting for this round — Kendra’s had this round in her for (a long time),” McIntyre said.
“I listened to (coach) Mac for once and I didn’t get overwhelmed — I just kept breathing,” Swanson said. “I didn’t get too high; I didn’t get too low.”
Swanson said she went into the trees on No. 2 and took two shots to get out, causing the double. But she made up for it by going par-par-par before a birdie on the par-5 sixth hole.
It was an exciting birdie at that, as her 15-foot putt stopped on the edge of the cup before trickling in.
Meanwhile, Alyssa Heim followed with a 9-over 45 — a score that was marred only by a double on No. 6 and a triple on the par-4 eighth.
The Beavers know they were only a shot or two on a handful of holes away from besting the Warriors on Wednesday — and they also know what that means going into the conference tournament Tuesday at The Oaks in Cottage Grove.
“It means we have a chance,” Swanson said.
This meet was originally scheduled for Aug. 31, but lightning forced play to be postponed midway through the round that day, when Heim was 5-over with just one hole to go and Grace Scharfenberg was 7-over with three holes to go.
“Both rounds would have been personal bests, most likely,” McIntyre said that day.
WAUNAKEE 183, BEAVER DAM 188
Waunakee — Sam Soulier 43, Brooke Ehle 45, Aly Kinzel 47, Elena Maier 48. Beaver Dam — Kendra Swanson 37, Alyssa Heim 45, Grace Scharfenberg 47, Marisa Boehler 59.
Front nine at Old Hickory, par 36