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By SARAH BEACH
The News-Democrat Intern
The girls golf team has a new coach for the upcoming 2012-13 season.
Tamara Cady, an English and drama teacher at Carroll County High School, will begin her second year as a teacher this fall, in addition to being the girls golf team’s new coach.
There are currently six girls on the team — two juniors (Hannah McMahan and Ashli Childs), three freshmen (Taylor Franklin, Jayden Bailey and Natalie Bennett) and one seventh grader (Ciara Hamilton).
Though the team is young, this only means that there is more time to “cultivate talent,” Cady said.
“With the exception of one, they’ve all played before,” she said.
Cady believes age will not be a factor that works against them and, instead, will allow the team time to grow and improve together.
While many of the girls remember the team’s leading senior last year, Quincy Hogan, Cady is optimistic that in her absence the team will quickly gain confidence and experience.
Cady said that Hogan is “certainly an impressive athlete.”
“I’m sure they did look up to her (Hogan) as a leader,” Cady said, “but her being gone, I think will just force some who weren’t leadership material or in a leadership role to take on that role.”
Golf is an individual sport, she said, and her team already reflects an independent spirit in their practices.
Cady hopes to provide “stability” and “supervision” to that independence, by allowing the girls to work together and help each other.
“They get along well with each other,” Cady said.
“My plan is to give them that supervision,” Cady said, “and even though I’m not the golf pro, you know, make sure there’s some sort of structure and professionalism we can carry out, not only in our practices but in our gameplay as well.”
“Even though golf is an individual sport,” Cady said, “… you want your team as a whole to do well.”
She said she intends to make practices as much like an actual match as possible, in order to give the girls practical experience.
Cady has never coached before and only played golf recreationally up to this point, but is excited about being on the course in a teaching role. She enjoys the slow, laid-back and polite nature of golf.
“That’s one of the things that appeals to me about it too, it does have such tradition and a professionalism,” Cady said of the sport.
“(Golf is) a very emotional sport,” she said. “If you’re kind of down, you’re not playing well. And if you’re not focused on where you’re hitting that ball, it’s all over the place.”
Golf is about competing against oneself and beating one’s own individual score, rather than other peoples,’ she said.
“While I want to win, … at the same time, I can’t make their mistakes for them,” she said. “They have to make their mistakes for themselves and then fix them.”
“Winning is great,” Cady said, “but representing our school and our county is more important.”
Cady graduated high school in 1991 in California where she grew up. She went back to school in 2006 at Northern Kentucky University, where she got her teaching degree in 2011.
Now she lives in Northern Kentucky with her husband, Lowell, a software engineer in Cincinnati, Ohio, and her daughter, Heather Lyn, who graduated from Scott High School in 2012.
Cady had always wanted to teach, but went into business instead. She is now fulfilling that dream of teaching here.
There was no coach until three weeks before the season started, and Cady volunteered to fill that position if no one else took it.
The team’s first match was this past Monday against Trimble County High School at General Butler State Resort Park. The team’s remaining home matches are on Aug. 22 against Williamstown, Sept. 6 against Gallatin County and Sept. 7 against Walton-Verona.
“I’m looking forward to getting to know all the girls, to doing whatever I can to make sure that they excel and they do well,” Cady said.