Maura Peters and Izzy Steele. Two golfers who have helped Pleasant Valley grow their program to what it is today.
“The year before I entered so it would’ve been eight grade, there were only about eight girls who tried out for the team and this year being my senior year, we had 25 come out for the team,” Peters said. “We’ve definitely had great growth when it’s come to the game. It’s really awesome to see because we really have people who want to get better and improve, which makes our team even better. Because all the girls who fill our six spots on the varsity team all want to get better, too.”
“My freshman year there was 15 and now as a junior there is 25, like Maura said. It’s just grown a lot and have friends who just love to go play with me or even just watch because they realize it’s a lot of fun,” Steele said.
Ever since, PV has won three consecutive MAC titles and — even more impressive this season — doing it with a new coach and not being ranked at the start of the year.
“In the beginning of the season, we were doing OK but we were still just placing against other teams then as the season went on everyone’s scores seemed to lower,” Peters said. “We’ve had some days were others score higher and that’s just part of the game. You don’t have good days all the time but looking at the season as a whole we’ve made great improvements and seems like were peaking at the perfect time.”
“Everyone is at their best and where we want them to be. Everyone’s hard work and effort has especially put them forward because they’ve been practicing everyday,” Steele said. “Actually trying and want to get better. Talk to coaches about how to get better and take private lessons outside of that and just keeping working on their game.”
Going into this week’s state tournament, the Spartans have only ever finished as runners-up, leaving that same underdog mentality that has them here ready to accomplish more.
“Staying positive because it’s really easy when you’re playing under pressure to really get down on yourself and pay attention more to your hole-by-hole score, rather than the overall picture where you have five other girls on the team who are there to back you up if you don’t have a great day,” Peters said. “It’s really important to keep that positivity and know you have people on the team who can back you up.”
Peters, Steele and the rest of the team will tee it up Thursday and Friday at Otter Creek Golf Course in Ankeny.