POST FALLS — Several local young golfers recently participated at the Idaho Golf Association Juniors District 4 at the Links Golf Club in Post Falls.
Kellogg High School standout Kat Rauenhorst finished third among the competitors, thus qualifing for a berth in the state competition later this summer.
Shooting one of her career best scores (81 and 78) 159, Rauenhorst took a rough outing on the course earlier in the week very seriously and used that memory — as well as some sage advice from her father — as the motivation for her performance.
“My family went golfing on Sunday and Monday and I played really bad. I literally couldn’t do anything, so I was obviously annoyed with myself,” Rauenhorst said. “My dad talked to me about what I was doing and I guess it just kind of fell together. I knew I could play well, but I didn’t think I’d ever be able to do something like this without actually being professionally coached.”
Rauenhorst’s high school coach Simon Miller was thrilled to hear of his standout’s showing. Even though he wasn’t able to attend the event, he was able to discern quite a bit from just the scorecards.
“When you get a feel for a golfer, like I have in coaching Kat the last two years, the scorecard really paints a picture for you,” Miller said. “These two rounds are Kat's bests of this golf season, and probably right up there for her career best. I know she's been wanting to break 80 in competition for a long time. That is the funny part about golf, all you can do is continue to work hard, and trust the process. Once you get around single digit handicap, you invest hours upon hours into your game and sometimes the scorecard doesn't yield those improvements. Once you are able to break through, as Kat did, there are some other mental hurdles to clear as well.”
For Rauenhorst, it was nice to have her mom and grandmother there to keep an eye on her when her dad was unable to make it, but she also appreciated the support from the other girls who were playing.
“It was really nice to play with girls who were supportive of me doing well when they weren’t,” Rauenhorst said. “I think that’s really cool and it says a lot about them, so I’m glad one of them can take my place at the state tournament.”
While Rauenhorst qualified for state competition, she will not be able to attend due to prior engagements.