Emma Cox paired her best round of high school golf with another 76-stroke finish to win the 4A district championship Tuesday, on the Tri-Mountain Golf Course in Ridgefield.
“It’s awesome being able to play two great days in a row,” Cox said. “I finished strong (Monday) and had a four-stroke lead. It all depended on how I played (Tuesday). I stayed zen, I stayed focused on each shot, trusted myself and was able to accomplish my goal of becoming district champion.”
Hailey Oster led the field in the finals, with a 75, to secure second place. She improved her score by five strokes to complete a two-day total of 155.
“I was really disappointed with how I played in the first round because I know I’m a lot better than that,” Oster said. “I was just trying to stay positive and just take it one shot at a time.”
Those two Papermakers helped the Camas girls golf team win the tournament by a landslide.
“It’s awesome how we took the first two spots, because last year we didn’t,” Oster said.
“We’re good friends, and it’s always a friendly rivalry. We’re always pushing each other,” Cox said. “Just to have her finish so close to me; it’s really awesome for Camas.”
Cox and Oster are on their way to the state tournament May 23 and 24, on the MeadowWood Golf Course in Spokane.
The Papermakers are sending four more golfers to the bi-district tournament Monday, on the Gold Mountain course in Bremerton.
Lauryn Tsukimura finished in fifth place at districts with a 174 and Wenny Cai followed in sixth place with a 176. Ashley Clark earned eighth place with a 181 and Avery Salvato notched ninth place with a 182 to round out the bi-district qualifers for Camas.
Cormac Briggance placed 16th for the Papermakers. She shot an 89 in the first round.
Cox delivered four birdies in the finals, including back-to-back challenging putts on 11 and 12.
“I think it was like 45 feet or something insane like that,” she said of her putt on 11. “I wasn’t expecting to make birdie there. That was awesome. I could hear everybody cheering.”
On 12, Cox faced an uphill putt from about 15 feet away.
“I was lucky it hit the hole. I had it going in strong and it was able to wrap around the hole and fall in,” she said. “That was a really good feeling to go from 3-over to 1-over.”
Although a few miss-hits led to some bogies and three-puts, Cox re-grouped and finished with a par on 18.
“I’m just so happy and really excited for the years to come,” she said. “I really wanted to win districts, but I wasn’t thinking I’d win it my sophomore year. I was waiting for junior or senior year. It was really great to win it my sophomore year.”
The next goal for Cox is to improve upon her 32nd place finish at state last year. She would love to crack into the top 15, or maybe break into the top 10.
Oster is aiming for the top five, after finishing in 12th place at state last year.
“My goal is to really work hard the next two weeks and prepare, and I hope Emma does the same thing and plays just as well,” Oster said. “Throughout the entire year, we’ve been pushing each other. It’s always back-and-forth, which helps because it makes you want to get better and just make it a battle.”