Girls golf: Cardinals were loaded again, but Section 8AAA got tougher

Alexandria’s Hannah Boraas holds her follow through on a shot at last year’s Alexandria Invite at the Alexandria Golf Club. Boraas won the Section 8AAA title a year ago as an eighth-grader and is part of a top six for the Cardinals who are all back in 2020. (Eric Morken / Echo Press)

If spring sports teams get a season in, the Alexandria girls golf team should be right back in contention for big things in the Central Lakes Conference and Section 8AAA fields.

The Cardinals won the CLC title a year ago and just missed qualifying for state as a team by falling to Brainerd at the section meet. That provides some motivation for Alexandria as this team features all of its varsity lineup back, including five All-CLC players in Hannah Boraas, Ciara O’Connor, Cora Larson, Aisling O’Connor and Lauren Rebrovich.

“I believe we will certainly challenge for another CLC title,” head coach Tim Zupfer said. “I also believe we will challenge for the Section 8AAA title, as well. We should certainly be one of the top 10-20 teams in the state, regardless of class.”

Boraas is the defending Section 8AAA individual champion, and Ciara O’Connor also joined her at the state meet a year ago. Zupfer said the golfers for this team spent a lot of time on their games in the offseason to try to take advantage of what should be a big season.

“Not only do we have experience, but the players are older and stronger,” Zupfer said. “They should have added more distance, which should have them hitting shorter clubs into many greens. Our players have been good ball-strikers, and this will continue to improve.”


Zupfer wants to see continued improvement from the girls on their short games. How good a player is from 100 yards and in often determines how low she can score.

“I believe all players can improve their scoring this season with a focus on this part of the game,” Zupfer said. “We will look to some course-management details, like our scoring on par 5s.”

Zupfer said Brainerd has some young players who are poised to join the varsity lineup. The always-tough Detroit Lakes program also joins Section 8AAA this spring.

“They are a team we see in many invitationals each season,” Zupfer said. “They have been a top-three team in the class AA state meet for many years. The top of their lineup is very strong, and some of their younger kids are developing. I expect a very challenging section meet.”

Zupfer is excited about this team’s possibilities if a season gets going. The rapidly-evolving situation around COVID-19 has created a possibility where the spring sports season might be cancelled completely. Teams know that going in as area coaches and athletes are taking this day-by-day as information becomes available.

“We look to have another successful season if the health of our state and nation allows,” Zupfer said.

(Editor’s note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Minnesota State High School League spring activities season is suspended through at least May 4. Whether a season will be played at all is very much up in the air, but these spring preview stories are meant to give coaches for area teams an opportunity to share what they think their players might be capable of if any type of season is played this year.)



SENIORS - Ashley Andres, Marissa Baker, Jaiden Drewes, Riley Fernholz, Haley Hoffman, Camryn Marshall, Ciara O’Connor, Megan Rydberg

SOPHOMORES - Isabella Hagen, Cora Larson, Lauren Rebrovich

FRESHMEN - Hannah Boraas, Molly Dudley, Ella Houska, Teryn Jaworski, Aisling O’Connor

COACHES - Head coach - Tim Zupfer - 13th season; Assistant coach - Mark Storhaug

Eric Morken is a sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press Newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota, a property of the Forum News Service. Morken covers a variety of stories throughout the Douglas County area, as well as statewide outdoor issues.
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