Ariana Furrie and Paige Jordan were each other’s ultimate calming influences Friday at the IHSA Class AA Girls Golf state tournament.
Furrie, a St. Charles North senior, and Jordan, a St. Charles East senior, have played countless rounds together through the years, and happened to be paired in the same group for the first day of the state tournament by virtue of their similar results at sectionals.
“It made it a lot more fun, like we were just playing to play and not at a huge tournament,” Jordan said.
That added comfort level might have helped both play relatively steady Day 1 rounds. Playing at Hickory Point Golf Club in Forsyth, Furrie shot a 7-over-par 79, putting her in a logjam tie for 16th place out of 110 entrants. Jordan was only one stroke further back at 80, slotting her in a tie for 23rd place entering today’s final round.
Furrie’s day was about as drama-free as could be. Her round was all pars – she had 11 of those – and bogeys, but no blow-up holes.
“It was pretty consistent,” Furrie said. “I would have liked a birdie, obviously, but I’ll save one for tomorrow, I guess.”
Her only putting debacle came on a miss from about 3 or 4 feet on her last hole of the day – No. 9 – ending her round with consecutive bogeys.
Furrie finished 15th in the state last year and is hopeful of improving upon that placement with a big round today.
Jordan was a stroke ahead of Furrie after the back nine, where the group started, thanks partially to her birdie on the par-4 17th.
Jordan pinpointed holes 1 through 5 as her rockiest stretch, but was mostly comfortable with her day at Hickory Point.
“It’s not too long,” Jordan said of the course, just outside Decatur. “I don’t really have too many long shots in. There’s a lot of trouble, though, you can get into, but if you’re just consistent where you’re aiming at and hitting it well, it should be an easier course for you, especially with the wind how it was today, where it wasn’t as crazy and chaotic as it was at sectionals.”
Furrie and Jordan won’t be in the same group for the final round today but had the chance to unwind together Friday night away from the course. The St. Charles contingent was staying at the same hotel.
“This year, we started talking a lot more when we played than we have in years before,” Furrie said. “Yeah, we were talking today. Like always, I guess.”
The other area AA qualifier, Burlington Central junior Jenna Kurosky, shot a 90 to land in a tie for 75th place. Leading the field was Stevenson senior Stephanie Miller, who was 1-under-par (71).
In the Class A girls tournament at Red Tail Run in Decatur, Rosary junior Victoria Phipps posted a 91 and is tied for 57th place.