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Meg Phelps cards an 89 in the first round of the state golf meet

Meg Phelps carded a 43-46-89 Tuesday during the first round of the 36-hole girls state Class AAA golf tournament at the par 36-37-73 Bunker Hills Golf Course.

"For her first round of the state meet, Meg played well," said Bemidji golf coach Jeff Nelson. "Before the round I thought the best we could hope for was about an 86 so an 89 is a very good score."

Phelps, a junior, putted 36 times during her 18 holes. Her round included seven 1-putts but also five 3-putts and a 4-putt.

The 89 puts Phelps in a tie for 43rd in the 88-player field. The firist-round leader is Betsy Kelly of Forest Lake who shot 35-38-73 Tuesday. Maggie Leland of Alexandria and Sara Detlefsen of Eastview-Apple Valley are tied for second, one shot behind Kelly.

"Meg hit the ball well for the most part," Nelson said. "She had some very good chips and drove the ball okay. Once in awhile she would try to sink a long putt instead of getting it close and she would miss the comebacker. But that happens to everyone."

During her first nine holes Phelps had to contend with rain but the precipitation stopped during her final nine holes.

Phelps will begin her second round about 8:15 a.m. today.

New Prague held the team lead after the opening round with a 330. Stillwater was second at 333, Edina third at 334 and Grand Rapids fourth at 339.

The other team scores included Eastview-Apple Valley's 345, Alexandria's 348, Irondale's 363 and Northfield's 375.

The state tournament also has been memorable for Nelson as Monday night he was inducted into the Minnesota Golf Coaches Association Hall of Fame in Brooklyn Center.

"It was a fun evening," Nelson said. "The highlight was when some of my former golfers, Alyssa Williamson, Brittany (Williamson) Carlson, Amanda Johnson and Amber (Neff) Finch presented me with a memory box. It was filled with many of the different things that happened during my coaching career."

Glenn Hasselberg of Staples introduced Nelson who was the lone Class AAA coach to be inducted. Bob Schissel of Park Rapids, a Class AA school, also was inducted at a ceremony held in New Prague Tuesday night.

"It was a fun evening but I'm glad it's over," Nelson said. "I talked for only about six minutes. I don't like getting up in front of people and I didn't want to stay up there any longer than that."

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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