Girls Golf: For Joliet co-op’s Singletary, sights set on banner year
By Logan Malloy For Sun-Times Media September 22, 2013 8:48PM
Milena Singletary, of Joliet Township. | Gary Middendorf/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 24, 2013 6:17AM
It’s a blank slate for Milena Singletary and her Joliet co-op teammates.
Of all the athletic banners draping the walls at Joliet Central, there’s one that stands out to Singletary, a junior at the school.
“I took a picture of our girls golf banner and there’s nothing on there,” she said. “Every other sport has won something. So one of my goals is to put our year on that, showing we achieved something at the school.”
Joliet co-op, which combines athletes from both Central and West, might not be ready to topple the burly SouthWest Suburban Blue just yet, but the program continues to make strides with Singletary headlining the lineup.
“Milena has been our No. 1 player pretty much since the start of her freshman year,” third-year coach Brian Koehne said. “She had a nice, natural swing when she first got here, but she’s really improved her game with additional experience and learning how to hit situational shots.”
Joliet co-op finished 8-9-1 in dual meets last year. So far in 2013, the team is 10-2.
“These are the best scores we’ve had since I took over the program,” Koehne said, noting much of that belongs to the play and leadership of his top player.
For Singletary, her game really started to click after she finished in the top 10 at the Joliet Central Regional last season, giving her a qualifying spot to sectionals.
“It helped my confidence a lot,” Singletary said. “(Sectionals) was my first real competition at that level and it opened my eyes for my potential and what I can do.”
Singletary parlayed that performance into a stellar summer. She captured the Joliet Junior Amateur crown with her best score to date, an 80 at Inwood in the first round of play, and she’s been Joliet co-op’s medalist in about half its meets, according to Koehne.
“I have more experience playing smarter, which I think has helped me this year,” Singletary said.
That recent display of course savviness isn’t a revelation to Koehne. Singletary is an honor roll student, plays alto saxophone in the band and competes on the soccer team in the spring.
“She works hard in whatever she does,” Koehne said. “She’s one of the really fun ones to coach.”
With Singletary, it might not be a blank slate for long.