Girls Golf: Stevenson's Stephanie Miller aims to become two-time champMount Prospect Wednesday, 8/15/12
Stevenson's Stephanie Miller during Wednesday's Knights Invite held at the Mt. Prospect Golf Club. | Brian O'Mahoney~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 12, 2012 5:54PM
With her college choice, Illinois, out of the way before the school year even started, Stevenson senior Stephanie Miller has been able to focus on her final season of high school golf.
That season comes to an end this weekend at the Class AA state tournament at Hickory Point in Decatur, and Miller has a chance to put the finishing touches on a stellar high school career in style.
The 2010 Class AA champion as a sophomore tied for eighth as a freshman and placed sixth last year, and now she has a shot at becoming the first multiple individual champion since Conant’s Kris Yoo pulled off the feat in 2008 and 2009.
“I’m very excited to play,” Miller said. “It’s just another opportunity to go low in my last high school event. It’s sad that it’s my last meet, but at least I do get to go play in college. I’m just going out and playing another round of golf. There’s no pressure. It’s just me against the golf course. It’s all about how you can do and seeing how you fall in the group of girls.”
Some competitors don’t pay too much attention to how the state’s other elite players are playing during the season, but Miller is not one of them. Due to the nature of golf over the summer, most of the state’s top players find themselves at the same tournaments and develop friendships. So when scores like Waubonsie Valley sophomore Bing Singhsumalee’s 64 at regionals pop up, Miller is well aware of it.
“I’m always watching everybody else because they’re my friends,” Miller said. “It’s fun to see that. It’s all positive.”
There are some individual title contenders on teams that advanced to state, such as Noreen Caporusso of Prospect, Rosanna Lederhausen of Hinsdale Central and Kelly Sterling of Lincoln-Way East.
But there is a strong group of individual qualifiers that make the field wide open. Some of the golfers Miller mentioned as favorites include Isabelle Kane of Loyola, Grace Kil of Buffalo Grove, Morgan Kukla of Zion-Benton, Kelli Ono of Highland Park and Singhsumalee.
“We’re all over the place,” Miller said of the solid players spread out all across the Chicago area. “There are only a few teams that are really deep still. Otherwise, there are one or two good girls at each school. We’re from all over the place, which is really cool. It’s not like there is just one area that breeds the good golfers these days.”
But only one of those individuals, Miller, can become a rare multiple champion this weekend.
“I will certainly try my best,” Miller said. “If I shoot a low score, hopefully I’ll be sort of close.”