The Cherokee Trail girls golf team captured a regional championship for the second straight season and an automatic team berth in the upcoming Class 5A girls state golf tournament.

Coach Justin Jajczyk’s Cougars played in the Northern Regional tournament at Flatirons G.C. and ran away with the team title, as they finished with a team total of 221, which was a whopping 20 strokes better than runner-up Castle View.

Leading the way was sophomore Kaleigh Babineaux, the only player in the field to shoot below par as she secured medalist honors with a round of 4-under 66. Babineaux made a birdie on her opening hole and made five of them on the day against just one bogey to finish nine strokes ahead of teammate Haylee Clark, the runner-up.

Clark finished with a 75, while senior Bead Boonta finished in a tie for sixth individually with an 80. Senior Sofia Johancen-Walt shot 92 and will be in state with the team.

Boonta, Babineaux and Clark all played in the state tournament last season, when Cherokee Trail finished in sixth place in the team standings. Boonta lost the chance to make state due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 (her freshman season), while she finished sixth in 2021 and 11th last season.

Rangeview and Smoky Hill also had entrants in the Northern Regional and the Buffaloes came away with a state berth from freshman Sophia Stiwich, who shot 76 that was good enough for third place individually.

Stiwich will make her first Colorado state tournament appearance.

Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports

2023 Class 5A Northern Regional

May 22 at Flatirons G.C.

Team scores: 1. CHEROKEE TRAIL 221; 2. Castle View 241; 3. Fossil Ridge 253; 4. Lakewood 262; 5. Fairview 267; 6. Highlands Ranch 289; 7. Liberty 331; 8. Prairie View 351

Top 15 individuals (par 70): 1. KALEIGH BABINEAUX (CHEROKEE TRAIL) 66; 2. HAYLEE CLARK (CHEROKEE TRAIL) 75; 3. SOPHIA STIWICH (SMOKY HILL) 76; 4. Ellie Barry (Fossil Ridge) 77; 5. Sydney McCord (Castle View) 78; T6. BEAD BOONTA (CHEROKEE TRAIL) 80; T6. Allison Ver Straate (Highlands Ranch) 80; T6. Shelby McCord (Castle View) 80; 9. Melana Pszanka (Castle View) 83; T10. Ava Hickey (Fairview) 85; T10. Sumin Kim (Lakewood) 85; T12. Ava Farrell (Fossil Ridge) 86; T12. Jessica Levy (Fairview) 86; 14. Sophie Wong (Lakewood) 87; 15. Alex Chung (Castle View) 88

Aurora team-by-team results (in order of finish)

Cherokee Trail (221): 1. Kaleigh Babineaux 66; 2. Haylee Clark 75; T6. Bead Boonta 80; 19. Sofia Johancen-Walt 92

Rangeview (NS): 30. De’Coda High 121

Smoky Hill (NS): 3. Sophia Stiwich 76

Courtney Oakes is sports Editor and photographer with Sentinel Colorado. A Denver East High School alum. He came to the Sentinel in 2001 and since then has received a number of professional awards from...

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