Canon-McMillan High's Lauren Waller had one of the higher scores at the WPIAL Girls Class AAA Individual Golf Championship as she shot a 44 on the front nine at 3 Lakes Golf Course.
But the Big Macs' sophomore shot her way back into contention and nearly pulled off a stunning victory as her back nine of 34 gave her an 18-hole score of 78, just two strokes behind the winning score of 76 posted by Hempfield High's Janista Numpho-Frank. Both golfers advanced to the PIAA Class AAA Western Regional Individual Golf Championships on Oct. 15 at Tom's Run Golf Course in Blairsville.
Name: Elizabeth Mansfield
High School: Canon-McMillan
Sport: Cross Country
Background Info: Mansfield is a senior captain on the Big Macs team. She is having a great season, and the achievements began early. At the September 1 California University Invitational, Mansfield set her own PR – 21:19. At a September 11 nonsection meet, Mansfield was a strong contributor to wins over South Fayette and Washington. Her time (at Canon-McMillan’s difficult home course) was 21:33.
The Big Macs’ girls’ team beat section 6-AAA contenders South Park and Bethel Park this past Tuesday (15-40 and 27-29, respectively).
At practice, Mansfield is somewhat of a vocal leader, organizing the workouts and keeping the team motivated with a positive attitude. Interestingly, Mansfield has made her running skills employable – she actually works as a “dog runner” for busy pet owners.
Quotes from head coach Mark Galley: "I tease [Mansfield] and tell her she’s a hill monster. She also runs anything we ask her to in track. Her summer mileage was up over 50 miles per week.”
A year ago, Lauren Waller was playing for a PIAA Division 1 state championship team at Shady Side Academy. This year, Waller transferred to Canon-McMillan High and found herself competing against boys during the regular season as the school does not offer girls golf.
So, she didn't compete against girls until individual qualifying events began for boys and girls golfers.
One of the top golfers at Shady Side, Waller was one of the top golfers on the team at Canon-McMillan, and she showed her mettle by winning her individual qualifier with a sizzling score of 74.
Canon-McMillan junior tennis player Yvon Martinez was playing on clay courts in Colombia, South America last season. So it has taken time to transition to the harder courts she has mostly played on in the United States this fall.
But as the season has progressed, she has continued to improve. On Sept. 14, Martinez defeated Peters Township’s Sara Komer, who won a PIAA title in doubles last year, in the Section 5-AAA championship.
Her performance at section qualified for last week’s WPIAL singles tournament, where she met Oakland Catholic’s Megan Wasson in the first round. Wasson had beaten Martinez at a tournament in Fox Chapel during the summer, but Martinez edged out Wasson 10-8 last Thursday to advance to the quarterfinals.