But it won’t be any tougher than Piedmont’s Erin Gunnels and Alexandria’s Madison Williams.
If things go as expected, the duo could wind up grouped together with the individual title on the line when the tournament concludes Saturday.
Gunnels has won back-to-back titles at the county as the Lady Bulldogs have picked up the last two team championships. Williams finished second at sectionals a year ago.
They’re both up the challenge, eyeing the potential matchup against each other.
“She’s a good golfer,” Williams said of Gunnels. “She’s a competitor. I really don’t know who might be No. 3 but it’s always fun to play against someone who’s just as competitive as you. It’s like Tiger and Phil.”
Gunnels said the two have been battling since she was in the seventh or eighth grade.
“Oh yeah,” Gunnels said when asked if she was looking forward to squaring off against Madison. “It’s always good to have a good rivalry.”
Both agreed the key to success at the tournament will be mastering their short games, especially considering the length of the course. It’s a portion of her game Gunnels said she’s been working on all season.
“My short-game is definitely a lot better,” Gunnels said. “You make up more strokes putting and chipping than you do hitting it longer off the tee than everybody.”
Madison said she feels good about the way she’s playing going into the tournament, adding that she’s been hitting the ball straighter as of late.
“I’ve been hitting my wedges better and getting on the green,” Williams said.
Gunnels’ attempt at a third-straight title will be her last hurrah at the county tournament and she’s got extra incentive to make sure she plays well Friday.
Prom could be on the line.
Unlike most tournaments where the top players play in the last group on the second day of the tournament, the top-finishers from today will play first Saturday. Piedmont’s prom is Saturday afternoon. So, teeing off earlier as opposed later would be nice.
Gunnels finished fourth in the state the past two seasons. This year, she has her eyes set on the ultimate prize. However, she wants the county title one last time as well.
“Its’ really important,” she said. “It’s a nice title to have.”
How important? How nice? You ask.
She said if she had to choose between the county tournament title and her senior prom or maybe a tad late, she’d change some arrangements around.
“I’d probably just go play,” she said. “The county title is important.
Nick Birdsong covers prep sports for The Star. He can be reached at 256-235-3575. Follow him on Twitter @birds_word.