NEW PALESTINE DRAGONS
Coach: Gregg Greene, 11th season.
Home Course: Hawk’s Tail, Greenfield.
2013: Hancock County, 2nd place, 168 (9 holes); Hoosier Heritage Conference, 3rd place, 364; Sectional, 5th place, 379.
2014 Varsity (w/grade): Abby Poole (12), Cassie Rooks (11), Bailey Kamp (12), Sarah Rose (12), Carly Jones (11), Mackenzi Black (9), Cassidy Harp (10), Kora Kropp (10), Payton Hill (10).
Outlook: With the entire lineup from an already talented 2013 group returning, the Dragons appear to be on the brink of a special season. New Palestine has never captured a girls golf sectional crown, but it has two-time individual sectional champ Abby Poole and a host of veteran players ready to make their mark, especially with defending champ Mt. Vernon suffering losses to graduation. Poole – also a two-time defending county tourney titleist – will get plenty of help from Cassie Rooks, Sarah Rose, Carly Jones and talented frosh Mackenzi Black, among others. “We’re kind of deep for this season,” NP coach Gregg Greene said. “It’s a nice problem to have, when you can go six or seven deep and still have the same score as your No. 2 or 3.” … Black could make an immediate impact on the Dragons’ lineup. She won four Indiana Junior Golf Foundation tournaments this summer in the 14-15 age group, including the series championship at Eagle Creek on July 29 with a career-best 75. “She is totally devoted to golf, loves the game and practices all the time,” Greene said. “She’s very talented and has a good head on her shoulders. Now, it’s just getting acclimated at the high school level. We tend to play the forward men’s tees instead of the ladies tee.” … The Dragons’ new home course is Hawk’s Tail in Greenfield. The program formerly practiced and hosted matches at The Links in New Palestine. … In 2013, New Palestine finished two strokes behind Mt. Vernon at the conference championship, eight strokes behind the Marauders at county and 13 strokes back at the sectional. “We knew Mt. Vernon was going to be very good last year,” Greene said. “We’re hoping things go our way at the end this year.”
Teeing Off: The Dragons will open the season Saturday in the Center Grove Invite at Prairie View Golf Course in Carmel. Prairie View is also the new home of the IHSAA Boys and Girls Golf State Finals. The girls State Finals are Oct. 3-4.