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Clarion Senior McKayla Kerle Conquers Difficult Greens to Repeat as D9 Girls Golf Individual Champion

COUDERSPORT, Pa. (EYT/D9) — McKayla Kerle was unhappy with the number on her scorecard.

But the Clarion Area senior was more than pleased with the final result.

On a difficult day for on the greens for all the competitors on Monday at Coudersport Golf Club in the District 9 Girls Golf Championships, Kerle shot an 83 to win the Class 2A individual title by 13 strokes over Karns City sophomore Chloe Fritch.

“It was good to win,” said Kerle, her voice noticeably couched in disappointment. “I could have shot a lot lower.”

But on a brutal day for anyone with a putter, 83 was more than good enough.

The greens at Coudersport Golf Club were rough because they were aerated before the girls championships on Monday.

The result of the aeration were tiny holes and a plethora of bumps scattered across every green, making fo an inconsistent surface that made every putt — even the routine ones — a challenge.

“The greens were all bumpy. The ball wasn’t rolling straight,” Kerle said. “It made things really tough. I missed a lot of putts I normally would have made because of all the little bumps.”

Kerle, though, improvised.

She was strong off the tee and also shined with her irons on approach shots and around the green. That mitigated the damage to her score from the tough putting conditions.

Kerle was well aware of her comfortable lead on the turn. She became even more conservative, knowing all she had to do to win her second consecutive D9 crown was to avoid disaster.

“It feels good to be able to do it two years in a row, and my senior year, too,” Kerle said. “The group I was playing with was the top three, so I knew what we all had. I knew o had a pretty good lead and I just had to be smart.”

Fritch shot a 95 and Rylee Thompson of Oswayo Valley and Smethport’s Olivia Schott each shot a 96.

Thompson and Schott played four playoff holes before Thompson eventually won to earn the final qualifying spot for the PIAA championships.

Those four were the only golfers on the field to break 100.

(McKayla Kerle and her brother, Kameron, both won District 9 individual golf titles.)

It was the second D9 title in three days for a Kerle.

Kameron Kerle, a sophomore at Clarion, won the boys Class 2A title on Saturday.

“It’s pretty cool that both of us could do it,” McKayla said. “He did it on Saturday and I knew I had a chance today to do it. We talked about it a little. We both just really wanted to do it. It’s neat.”

The Moniteau girls won the Class 2A girls team title.

Emma Covert led the way for the Warriors with a 104. Mariska Shunk carded a 108, Taylor Voloch a 115 and Kendall Sankey a 121.

Lily Gerdris of Allderdice won the Class 3A individual championship with an 87.

Bradford won the Class 3A team title.