Rifle’s Forney takes fourth at 4A state girls golf tournament
GOLDEN, Colorado – Loren Forney celebrated a birdie on Hole 18 while her mother-slash-coach shed a tear of joy.Deanna Forney, Rifle’s girls golf coach, couldn’t have been any prouder of her 16-year-old daughter, whose birdie closed out a 5-over-par 78 at Rolling Hills Country Club in Golden in Tuesday’s second and final round of the Class 4A state tournament.Coupled with her first-day score of 82, Loren landed in the top five at state for a second straight year, adding a fourth-place medal in 2008 to the fifth-place medal she snagged last year at Highlands Meadows Golf Course in Windsor.Her score of 160 finished behind only state champion Elizabeth Kresock of Colorado Academy, whose 2-under 71 on Tuesday gave her a two-day score of 150, runner-up Olivia Garrard of Kent Denver (153) and bronze finisher Chance Forbes of Evergreen (158). Glenwood Springs’ Michelle Stripp, who played with Forney and Broomfield’s Molly Dorans on Tuesday, was fifth with a 164.What’s scary is that, as a sophomore, Loren has two more years to add to her medal collection. Again, mom couldn’t be much prouder.”Oh yeah,” Coach Forney said. “That’s where the tears come from, the mom side. She said, ‘Mom, I just want to finish at least what I did last year, if not better.’ It’s good to know she got her goal.”Little Forney made quite the stride on the tough back nine at Rolling Hills, improving from a 6-over 43 on Monday to a 40 on Tuesday.”I felt like my stroke was a lot better,” she said. “My putting was a lot better. Both my putting and my short game were stronger than yesterday, for sure.”Forney’s birdie on 18 was her third of the day, with the other two falling on the front nine. An approach shot that nailed a bank on the green and rolled back toward the hole set the stage for a manageable birdie putt.”It felt great,” Forney said. “It felt like a dream almost.”With the school golf season done, Forney is set to immerse herself in a summer full of golf. She’ll start by playing in the Colorado Open this weekend, followed by countless other tourneys scattered throughout the summer.Forney will also attend an Arizona State University golf camp and head to Australia and Hawaii to play tournaments with the Down Under golf program. She’ll also put in time with her coach at Denver’s McGetrick Golf Academy.She hopes the summer regimen pays off come next year.”I just want to stay consistent and keep on getting better, improve my swing,” Forney said. “Hopefully I can learn new some shots.”
Rifle senior Kori Kosht and junior exchange student Mercedes Bolado each improved on Tuesday, with the former carding a 99 and the latter a 118 in the second round of the state tournament.Bolado shot a 124 on Monday, while Kosht posted a 104.
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Amid hundreds of cleat-footed little leaguers casually gathered along the first baseline, the glare of parents’ sunglasses deflecting the early morning sun, coach Troy Phillips began a trip down memory lane.