Franklin Regional girls golf looks for rebound year
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Franklin Regional girls golf coach Kane Daignault sees a lot more when he looks at his team this season.
A lot more players, and a lot more potential.
After qualifying for the WPIAL Class AAA playoffs in 2012, Franklin Regional struggled to a two-win season last year. But with a handful of players returning from last season's team and about a dozen newcomers, Daignault is hoping for more success in 2014.
“Last year's team wasn't very strong, so you anticipate them being better this year,” coach Kane Daignault said. “I anticipate them being better this year. I think the team is going to be better this year.”
Daignault said he was especially excited to see 17 players come out for the team this season after playing last year with fewer than 10.
“I could go back to years where I could combine two teams and not have 17 girls,” he said. “So I'm excited about that.”
Starters Brenna Scott, a senior, and Livia Molinaro, a junior, return for Franklin Regional this season. They were the Panthers' top two scorers a season ago, improving their scoring averages by about five strokes from the 2012 season.
“It was a big learning experience just because we didn't have as many returning players, and we lost a lot of the starting lineup,” Scott said of last season. “I think, especially Livia Molinaro and I because we were in the top five last year, it helped us because we got that experience. Now we can bring it to (this) year, too.”
Seniors Lauren Gillespie and Diane Smith, junior Hannah Strobel, sophomore Mikaela Puhl and freshman Joceyln Behr will also compete for spots in Franklin Regional's starting lineup this season.
“I'm excited because we have so much diversity now,” Scott said. “Before, with a smaller group, you had girls who had special talents. Now, you see different styles of golf coming into play. It's interesting to watch.”
The team also has a handful of freshmen, somewhat of a rarity for Daignault. Last year's team included just one freshman.
“For a girls golf coach, that's exactly what you have to see coming in to be competitive in the following years,” Daignault said. “You need a good group of freshmen coming in that are athletic. A lot of times, they don't have much golf experience, but if they're athletes (and) they've played other sports leading up to this point, normally you can turn them into good players by the time they're juniors and seniors. That's what I anticipate with this group.”
Although Daignault said he expects some inconsistency with this year's team because a lot of the players are still learning the game of golf, he hopes the Panthers can contend for the WPIAL playoffs again. Franklin Regional will compete in Section 3-AAA with Gateway, Indiana, Norwin and Penn-Trafford, with the top two teams qualifying for the playoffs.
“I think we're going to try and win a few more matches than we did last year, just because now we do have that experience,” Scott said. “Besides that, (we want to) get the new girls some experience playing golf.”
Franklin Regional opened the season Monday with a nonsection match at Mt. Lebanon before hosting Fox Chapel on Tuesday, past the deadline for this week's edition. The Panthers will play at Penn-Trafford in their section opener on Thursday afternoon.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Founder of Z&M Cycle Sales in Hempfield killed in Florida motorcycle crash
- Starkey: Tomlin lived in his fears
- Slain St. Clair officer walked into ‘worst nightmare’ for police
- Increasing player salaries pinch financial flexibility of Pirates
- 2,200 union employees of ATI lose coverage
- 7 percent in Allegheny County able to carry concealed gun
- Film session: Long shots dotted Steelers’ passing game
- Steelers receiver Wheaton takes advantage of opportunity in breakout game
- Penguins’ reshuffled top line of Crosby, Dupuis, Kunitz looks familiar
- Pa. Supreme Court: Highmark Medicare Advantage members to retain access to UPMC
- Steelers notebook: Bryant confident in backup Jones if Big Ben can’t play