LOVELAND — The Monarch girls golf team didn't have any devastating putting woes like Ernie Els six-putting to card a 10 on the first hole of the Masters this past Thursday.
But the Coyotes struggled enough with the putter to make a difference.
Monarch's hot streak to start the season cooled off a bit on a chilly Monday as the Coyotes turned in a 239 team score to win the team competition at the R2J Invitational.
"They're playing well," Coyotes head coach Mike Riley said. "Our putting was atrocious today, though. If we were on with our putting, we could have done a lot better. We had one girl with a triple- and a couple girls with two double-bogeys, so losing those six to eight strokes affected us as far as the team score goes. But overall, they're striking the ball well. It's just the little things and it's spring greens still so I'm not too worried about that."
Senior Delaney Elliott, who placed ninth at the Class 5A state tournament last season, shot a 3-over 75 and finished a close runner-up to Loveland's Lauren Lehigh, who carded a 74. Monarch's Carly Gallant shot a 78, which landed her in a tie for third with Loveland's Aili Bundy.
Also for Monarch, Anna Nickerson shot an 86 and Liina Neitenbach shot a 90.
"We could have been better but it was a solid day," Riley said. "The girls have been playing great so far this season we were putting for birdies and taking pars today, so we have room to move. Tomorrow will be a good test because it's the start of our Front Range League and everybody will have their number ones there."
Silver Creek's Erin Sargent, who placed third at the Class 4A state tournament last season, carded an 86 to finish in the top 10.
Though it was a rough day for most, Monday was a breakout day for Broomfield's Kenna Anderson, who shot an 86 to card her career-best round by eight shots.
"It was cold and that's a tough golf course so when I saw that score, I was beyond happy for her," Broomfield head coach Tony Ferraro said. "It's definitely a breakout moment for her but she's been swinging it well and improving a lot so it wasn't completely unexpected to see her have a huge jump."
Also for the Eagles, who placed fifth, Nicole Larson shot a 95, Lauren Lynch shot a 102 and Jessica Clark finished in 130 strokes.
Tri-Valley League teams Skyline, Erie and Frederick also competed in the R2J Invitational. But counting their scores as part of a conference meet within the R2J, Skyline placed third, Frederick placed fourth and Erie placed sixth.
At Mariana Butte G.C., par-72
Team scores — Monarch 239, Loveland 245, Fossil Ridge 260, Windsor 264, Broomfield 283, Northridge 286, Thompson Valley 290, Berthoud 298, Skyline 308, Mountain View 311, Frederick 312, Resurrection Christian 318, Erie 330, Silver Creek 331, Estes Park 331, Poudre 333, Roosevelt 375.
Top 3 individuals — 1. Lauren Lehigh, Loveland, 74; 2. Delaney Elliott, Monarch, 75; t3. Aili Bundy, Loveland, 78; t3. Carly Gallant, Monarch, 78.
Other Monarch results — Anna Nickerson 86, Liina Neitenbach 90.
Broomfield results — Kenna Anderson 86, Nicole Larson 95, Lauren Lynch 102, Jessica Clark 130.
Skyline results — Laci Williams 98, Isa Ramos 101, Trinity Peter 109, Allison Hoskins 114, Lexi Ekern 115.
Frederick results — Erin Baum, 94, Alix Lowry 108, Peyton Wallace 110, Cassie Palmer 122, Ashley Carder 127.
Erie results — Jordan Couper 95, Shayla Hoople 114, Peyton Toledo 121, Sophie Arnold 129, Kelsi McDonald 140.
Silver Creek results — Erin Sargent 84, Taylor Sandal 119, Dana Dwyer 128, Mollie McCoy 135.