Kenzie Neisen of New Prague (Bruce Bisping/Star Tribune)
Wayzata’s Sarah Burnham and New Prague’s Kenzie Neisen, the 2013 state co-medalists, shared the lead on Tuesday after one round of the Class 3A girls’ golf tournament at Bunker Hills Golf Club in Coon Rapids.
Burnham’s 5-under-par 67 helped the Trojans take a 13-stroke lead over defending champion Edina in the team competition.
The senior birdied seven holes, including the first and the 18th, as Wayzata positioned itself for its first team title since 2011.
“I really just wanted to play for my team this year,” Burnham said. “Now that my whole team’s here, I mean, it would be awesome if we could pull one out this year.”
Not to be outdone, Neisen birdied five of her first seven holes and fired a 31 on the front nine. She improved to 6 under with a birdie on the 12th but dropped back to 5 under with a bogey on the 15th.
Neisen (8:06 a.m., East Course) will tee off before Burnham (9 a.m., East Course) for Wednesday’s final round, but it appears that won’t change her approach.
“I’m just going to go out there and have fun tomorrow, try and do the same thing I did today,” she said. “It’ll be a battle, but it’ll be a fun one.”
Class 2A: Detroit Lakes, the two-time defending champion, opened up a 33-stroke advantage at Ridges of Sand Creek in Jordan. The Lakers shot a sizzling 293, led by medalist Sydney Busker. The junior carded an even-par 72 as the Lakers posted five of the top nine scores on the day.
Class 1A: The top three teams — BOLD, Legacy Christian and Fillmore Central — will enter the final round at Pebble Creek in Becker within four strokes of each other. BOLD led with a 365 while defending champion Legacy Christian carded a 367. Southwest Christian senior Christine Piwnica and Sleepy Eye sophomore Lauren Laften shared medalist honors with 79s.
Hastings’ Cooper leads the 3A boys
In the Class 3A boys’ tournament, Hastings senior Jacob Cooper appears to be playing his best golf at the opportune time. Cooper, who struggled at the beginning of the season, shot a 3-under 69 at Bunker Hills to take a two-stroke lead into the final round.
Cooper shot a 3-under 33 on the front nine. He shot a 6-under 138 in sections last week. His surge comes about six weeks after he struggled to a 77-84 finish at the Tri-State Invitational.
“I’ve had a lot more confidence in my game — played really good the last month and a half,” he said.
Cooper helped Hastings shoot 306 as a team, good for a tie for third. Edina’s Kobi Boe and Sam Foust and Rochester Century’s Chris Captain are tied for second.
Edina, looking for its first state championship since 1987, shot a 3-over 291 and holds a six-stroke lead over Wayzata.
The 3A boys beginning teeing off at noon.
Class 2A: Delano sophomore Austin vanSytzama had a two-stroke lead after firing a 3-under 69. Providence Academy had a six-shot advantage over Mankato East in the team competition.
Class 1A: Only nine players came in under 80, led by Mahnomen/Waubun senior Nathaniel Kahlbaugh with a 75. Dawson-Boyd (334) and United South Central (335) were atop the team standings.