Since 2003, the Andover and Saint Thomas Aquinas girls golf programs have combined to win six state championships, but with the Trojans in 4A and the Saints in 5A during that span, neither can say, definitely, whose program is the best.
Now that Andover has made the jump to 5A, the first of perhaps many showdowns between the Trojans and the Saints takes place today at the 5A state tournament at Brookridge Country Club in Overland Park.
"Our girls are certainly looking forward to the challenge of facing Aquinas," Andover coach Marty Quy said. "Sometimes when you pair really good players together, they can rise to challenge and feed off the other. I'm hoping that's what we can do"
After winning four consecutive state titles from 2004-2007, Andover took second place in 4A last season. Aquinas rolled to the 5A title in 2008, shooting a 311 with four golfers placing in the top ten.
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"It's going to be a good representation of girls golf," Quy said. "We are going to try and produce so we can have a chance."
Last week at regionals, Andover won at Emporia with a score of 375. The Saints shot 311 to take their regional at Pittsburg Country Club.
"They certainly have a home course advantage by playing at Brookridge," Andover senior Sara Morris said. "But with the way the wind has been blowing, it plays a lot like Crestview, where we practice, so we feel comfortable too."
Morris and senior Whitney Ronshagen already have been part of a pair of state title teams for the Trojans.
The Saints have reigning state champion Gianna Misenhelter, who shot 73 at Salina Municipal Golf Course last season.
"Our seniors have the experience now to know what it takes down the closing five or six holes to come through," Quy said. "Sara and Whitney didn't play well last year but now, they can build on that for this season."