Zionsville set a state finals record on Friday on its way to the team title and Plainfield’s Kayla Benge earned the individual crown to conclude the 45th Annual IHSAA Girls Golf State Finals at Prairie View Golf Club in Carmel.

The top-ranked Eagles of coach Jeff Anderson put up a first round 299 setting an 18-hole state finals record on Friday and followed with a 321 on Saturday for a two-day total of 620, tied for the fourth-best state finals mark. It was the school’s first state championship in the sport and sixth overall.

Sophomores Annabelle Pancake and Abby Thielbar both finished among the top 10 individuals to lead their team. Pancake shot a 149 (74-75) to earn fourth place overall while Thielbar ended with 154 (70-84) to finish in a three-way tie for seventh. Thielbar was tied for the lead after Friday’s first round. Junior Avery Von Dielingen finished tied for 17th at 158 (77-81), senior Claire Edwards ended tied for 25th at 162 (81-81) and senior Maggie Nobbe rounded out the Eagles contingent with a 29th place finish at 163 (78-85).

Second-ranked Westfield finished as the state runner-up for the third consecutive year at 638 and were followed by the three-time defending state champions Evansville North at 639. Columbus North was fourth at 650 and Homestead earned its highest finish ever in fifth place with 657.

Plainfield’s Benge began the day tied for third with a Friday round of 71 over the 5,741-yard course. The senior scored a pair of birdies on the front nine Saturday morning and finished her day at +2 to finish at 145 (71-74) to become the first golfer from her school – girls or boys – to win the state crown.

Benge edged 2015 state champion Alexis Miestowski of Lake Central who finished as the state runner-up with 146 (72-74). Hadley Walts of Evansville North and 2015 state runner-up, shot 148 (71-77) for third place. Following Pancake, Columbus North senior Danbi Kim finished fifth with 150 (76-74).

The two-day event was played under nearly ideal conditions with clear blue skies, prevailing light winds and temperatures in the low 70s.

Plainfield’s Kayla Benge named Mental Attitude Award recipient

Plainfield High School’s Kayla Benge was named the recipient of the Mental Attitude Award by the IHSAA Executive Committee during the awards ceremony.

The senior advanced to the state finals all four years and became the first player from her school to win the mental attitude award along with the individual state championship. She is also a two-year letterman in girls’ basketball and served as captain last year.

Benge has maintained a 4.2 GPA (4.0 scale) during her high school career and maintains numerous leadership roles including the National Honor Society, Student Government, Spanish Club, PHS Athletic Council, and attended the IHSAA Leadership Conference and Mid-State Leadership Conference.

She is the daughter of Curt and Jennifer Benge of Plainfield and plans to study business at Xavier University where she will also play golf.

Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the sponsor of 28 IHSAA mental attitude awards, presented $1,000 to Plainfield High School’s general scholarship fund in the name of Kayla Benge.

The IHSAA Executive Committee presents the mental attitude award to the outstanding senior participant during the state finals each year dating back to 1973. The recipient of the award, nominated by her principal and coach, was determined to have best demonstrated excellence in mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability in girls’ golf.

The 45th Annual IHSAA Girls Golf State Finals

September 29-30, 2017

Prairie View Golf Club, Carmel

Pos         Team Standings R1           R2           Total

  1. Zionsville 299*      321         620
  2. Westfield 316         322         638
  3. Evansville North 318         321         639
  4. Columbus North 326         324         650
  5. Homestead 332         325         657
  6. Fishers 329         329         658
  7. Carmel 329         333         662
  8. Hamilton Southeastern 330 337         667
  9. Culver Academies 349         338         687
  10. Valparaiso 362         349         711
  11. Lafayette Jefferson 353         360         713
  12. Evansville Memorial 359         361         720
  13. Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger 367         358         725
  14. Bedford North Lawrence 391         367         758
  15. DeKalb 381         380         761

*18-hole State Finals Record

Pos         Top 10 Players   R1           R2           Total

  1. Kayla Benge (12) Plainfield 71           74           145
  2. Alexis Miestowski (12) Lake Central 72           74           146
  3. Hadley Walts (12) Evansville North 71           77           148
  4. Annabelle Pancake (10) Zionsville 74           75           149
  5. Danbi Kim (12) Columbus North 76 74           150
  6. Morgan Lewis (12) Fishers 75           78           153

T7.          Jocelyn Bruch (10) Westfield       75           79           154

T7.          Elyse Stasil (12) Chesterton         70           84           154

T7.          Abby Thielbar (10) Zionsville        70           84           154

  1. Reese Wilson (9) Culver Academies 79           76           155