EGHS girls golf celebrates family mentality

Paul Jonas, Editor In Chief

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Senior golfer Maggie Cronin wasn’t feeling well before one of her meets.

But then, the Elk Grove High School senior athlete’s attitude and condition changed. Head coach Kristen Gierman took the team to Target. They bought Goldfish and animal crackers.

They held hands. They walked together.

They looked like family.

“Our team was inseparable,” Cronin said.

Despite golf being an individual sport, head coach Kristen Gierman firmly believes that her Elk Grove High School varsity girls squad works on a team-centric wavelength.

“The girls are ultimately playing for themselves, but I think that’s what made this season so unique,” Gierman said. “They really had this ability to pick each other up. In golf you can’t rely on someone else to pick you out up a tough situation. But that togetherness gave them resiliency when times did get tough.”

Gierman credits her seniors for helping establish standards for the program.

“Truthfully, it was the seniors they were the ones that took hold,” she said. “They are really just a group of disciplined athletes. There are also many athletes that played other sports which I think helped encourage that standard regardless of playtime. They were selfless and they just wanted to help their team. It was a blessing as a coach.”

With the team going to miss its core group of seniors, there will surely be a big void to fill.

However, Gierman believes it can be done by some of the Grenadiers’ up and coming golfers.

Junior Teodora Evtimova was one of them. An all-conference golfer, Evtimova led the way for the Grens this season, and significantly contribute towards the team qualifying for sectionals this season.

“My favorite moment of the season was counting up all our scores and finding out we have qualified for sectionals as a team,” Evtimova said.

She credits her individual success to her teammates, and the special bond that the team possesses.

“I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this without the support of my teammates,” Evtimova said.

Evtimova said the girls golf team collaborated in pre-meet meetings. According to her, these meetings not only bolstered the team spirit, as well as each player’s individual focus and drive.

“Before every invite we gather as a team and not only discuss our goals for the day, but hold each other accountable to those goals,” she said. “This unconditional support was the divider between successful teams.”

Cronin adored her time on the team, and she will always remember her favorite moments that made each day worthwhile.

“I definitely think our success is caused by us all practicing in the offseason,” Cronin said. “Almost every day after camp a group of us would go play another nine holes or practice short game together. It made everyone of us better which also increased the competition.

“That helped us make it as far as we did,” she added.