Players from the three-time defending state champion Edina girls golf team approached Chanhassen players June 12 at Bunker Hills Golf Course.

A congratulations was in order. Almost a passing off the torch.

Though the top-ranked Storm led throughout the 36-hole event, battling rain on Day One, wind on Day Two, the program's first state championship didn't feel secure until the final score was posted.

A 13-stroke victory over two days, a six-stroke advantage over the final round.

"I just think having six players with the capability to shoot in the 70s, or close to it, really was the difference. We had six really strong players that worked very hard during the season, before the season, and it paid off with a state title," Chanhassen's Hayley Thompson said.

There were trophy photos on hole No. 3 on the West Course, the site of a hole-in-one from Chanhassen's Madi Hicks in 2018.

There was a short rendition of Queen's "We Are The Champions."

There were tears, plenty of hugs and smiles, and a water bath for Chanhassen coach David Kalthoff. Courtney Wedin, state runner-up with a two-day total of 145, shouted "State champions" in the parking lot loading into the bus.

And to top it off, Carver County Sheriff's Office patrol cars and Chanhassen Fire and Rescue vehicles welcomed home the Storm late Wednesday.

Chanhassen, making its fourth consecutive state meet appearance, fifth in 2016, third in 2017, and fourth in 2018, was the team to beat into the state meet.

The Storm posted the winning score in 12 of 14 rounds into state. They were champions in 11 of 12 events. Chanhassen beat Edina, state champions in 2016-2018, twice, including an April meet at Bunker Hills.

Play to their abilities and the Storm seemed in good shape.

"Coming in, I think we all thought we had a good chance at winning. I was talking with my dad a couple days ago, how an article in the newspaper listed Edina as the team to watch. How they had a shot at a four-peat. Well, we showed everyone we could do it. We're the team to watch," Wedin said.

Playing to their abilities indeed in round one, Chanhassen shot a team-record score of 309, one stroke better than the second round in the Section 2AAA Meet.

Wedin posted her best round ever as well, a one-under par 71 that included five birdies.

Madi Hicks was just a few spots back, tied for fifth after 18 holes with a one-over par score of 73.

Captains Emily Renner (82) and Thompson (83) finished off the first-day score with Tricia Hemann (89) and Courtney Dunkelberger (91) completing the team score.

Chanhassen led Roseville Area by four strokes and Edina by seven strokes into Day Two.

At the turn on June 12, the lead had ballooned to 10 strokes over Edina.

"I think it's important to get off to a good start, but you have to stay even, not get too cocky. My parents kept telling me to calm down after I'd have a good hole. Things can change very quickly in this game. Remaining calm, not being too up or too down, is so important in golf," Thompson said.

Hemann, with a two-birdie round, got into the clubhouse with an 81, an improvement of eight strokes from Day One.

Thompson, the lone senior, put together 14 of her best holes of the season, just three-over par. She finished with an 81 as well, tying for 28th.

Renner, who holed an eagle on hole No. 14, gave Chanhassen a third score, an 82.

All that was left was one final score needed from Wedin. Twelve pars, two birdies, the second-best round of the day, a 74.

State championship clinched.

"Tuesday's weather really played to my game. I was able to just go after it, hit the ball long. I just kept hitting solid shot after solid shot," Wedin said. "Today, I don't usually play well in wind, my ball has a lot of spin, but I was able to play the frontside in two-over and that really gave me the momentum to keep going. I kept shooting pars and kept my score low."

"It was like a fairy tale ending," she added. "We play our game, and at the end of the day we're just having fun. And by doing that we're winning. I just love these girls so much."

Chanhassen, which played the final round in 318, finished with a two-day score of 627. Edina and Simley were second and third at 640 and 655.

Hicks, despite shooting an 85 in the second round, finished 14th with a 36-hole score of 158.

"It seemed surreal for a while. It was historic," said Thompson of the championship realization moment.


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