FLOSSMOOR | Eight bogeys, a double-bogey and four birdies.
Those aren’t the usual ingredients for a 77, but Nina Nicpon of Marian Catholic managed it at Coyote Run Golf Course on Monday.
Nicpon’s unorthodox round -- she was 3-over after two holes -- placed her fourth in a fast field in Marian’s 13-team invitational.
Her 6-over-par aggregate placed her fourth in the field, and led the four-woman Spartan contingent.
“It felt worse than a 77,” Nicpon said. “I started with a double-bogey and a bogey. I started the back nine with a bogey. My short game was not too well today.”
A lesser player might have folded like an old road map, but Nicpon grinded for some pars, and then the birdies came her way, two on each side of Coyote Run’s immaculately prepared course.
She finished nine strokes better than her 86 last year on the opening day of the high school season.
In the end, Nicpon was only four strokes off pacesetter Taylor Arenson, whose 2-over-par 73 led the field, and paced Naperville North to a total of 39-over 323 and a 37-stroke victory over Naperville Central.
Marian finished eighth, totaling 390, with Homewood-Flossmoor’s 407 bringing the Vikings 10th place.
Nina’s sister Mira Nicpon, a freshman, posted a 99 in one of her first competitive rounds. A casual player until now, she decided to go out for the golf team on Aug. 1, switching from volleyball.
Kendall Paris’ 87 led the Vikings, a score coach Brad Kain was delighted to see. So was Paris.
“I’m really content with it,” Paris said. “We started on 14, and that was tough, but I tried to keep my head in it.”
She did, scoring 42 on Coyote’s front nine after a rocky first five holes. A senior, Paris is the only player on the squad who played on the varsity as a freshman, when Ashley Armstrong, Michelle Mayer and Lauren Dawson were setting the world on fire.
“I want us to be that team again,” Paris said. “They were like LPGA stars. Michelle Mayer’s my role model. This is definitely a rebuilding season, but we could be solid in the future.
"We’ve got a lot of talent coming up.”