Girls Golf: Kelli Ono leads Highland Park to sectionals

Updated: October 3, 2012 5:57PM

On a day when a rain-soaked course left all but two golfers with scores 80 and above, Highland Park’s Kelli Ono went low.

The Highland Park sophomore shot a 75 at Wednesday’s New Trier Regional to earn medalist honors and lead her team to sectionals. The Giants finished with a team score of 354, tying with Loyola Academy for second place behind New Trier (334). Glenbrook South (356) and Glenbrook North (358) barely failed to qualify for Oct. 8’s Carmel Sectional.

“I came in and I saw the scores and I was really concerned that we weren’t going to go as a team. I was really sad,” Ono said. “Just going as a team and also winning regionals is huge. It’s really great for me.”

The only other golfer to break 80 at Winnetka Golf Club was New Trier’s Nerissa Denenberg. Denenberg, the team’s No. 3 golfer, finished with a 78.

Denenberg’s score highlights a season-long trend for the Trevians. New Trier received a career-best 76 from No. 4 golfer Julia Schuham at Sept. 20’s Central Suburban League conference tournament en route to a CSL title.

“It feels really good to be the one to come through,” said Denenberg, whose 78 was her second-best score of the season. “Someone almost always does it — goes low — on our team, and being that person feels really good.”

Loyola’s Isabelle Kane (80) recorded the regional’s third-best individual score. Glenbrook South’s Rachel Kim (83) and New Trier’s Ellie McGuire (83) rounded out the tournament’s top-five finishers.

Niles North’s Quynh Nguyen (96) was the final golfer to advance to sectionals. She defeated Deerfield’s Carrie Trapani with a birdie on the first hole of a playoff which decided the 10th and final individual qualifier for sectionals.

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