LOUISVILLE — There is no such thing as a sure thing in sports ... especially golf.
But Monarch's Delaney Elliott was in a pretty good spot heading into Tuesday's third and final Front Range League match that doubled as the league championship at the Coyotes home course, Coal Creek Golf Course.
The Coyotes senior had a comfortable 13 shot lead over Loveland freshman Lauren Lehigh and, a year after a costly three-put from close range — where she thought she had done enough to win the crown — cost her the league medalist honors, there was no way she was going to allow doubt to creep in.
"I knew I had a little bit of a lead and our team did as well, so I just wanted to go out and have fun and play the best I could," said Elliott, whose 76 on Tuesday was good enough for a three-shot victory and was ultimately thrown out because it was her highest of three FRL matches.
"For a while I was all right and got a little frustrated after back to back bogies, but after that I told myself I was going to make some birdies down the stretch."
Elliott was the picture of consistency, making 12 par against just 5 bogeys. The lone birdie of the day came on the short par-3 No. 17, where she hit a tee-shot to within six feet of a tough front right hole location and then made the putt.
"I played better and my mind was better," she said.
With the bad weather doing away with 40 percent of the league slate, the chances to get out and play have been few and far between, and Elliott knows her game is starting to come around just in time for the regional tournament and the upcoming state tournament.
"It's not really where I want it to be but my wedge game needs to get stronger for sure and that is all today really was," said Elliott, whose Monarch team will travel to the 5A Northern Regional tournament on Monday at Ptarmigan Golf Club. "Just working harder on that and obviously putting is always a factor, but everything else feels pretty good, so hopefully there will be some good days."
Fairview's Madison McCambridge, the reigning league champion, and Legacy's Jennifer Hankins each shot 7-over 79's on Tuesday to finish three shots behind Elliott.
McCambridge knew that repeating as league champion was a long shot, so she simply went out and prepped her game for the final stretch.
"I really have been focusing on my short game and my putting, because that has been a struggle all year," McCambridge said. "I was really trying to take it one hole at a time.
Monarch's Carly Gallant (82), Legacy's Andrea Hoos (82), Broomfield's Anna Roh (84), Monarch Emma Teuton (86) and Broomfield's Maddie Kern (86) all had top 10 finishes on Tuesday.
The top five spot in the league had their tickets punched to their respective regional tournaments. It appears that Legacy's third-place league finish will have them in Colorado Springs on Monday for the Class 5A Southern. Fourth-place Broomfield will be at Littleton's South Suburban for the Central regional.
Boulder and Fairview will await a decision from the CHSAA as to their sites, which could also be Grand Junction's Tiara Rado on Tuesday.
FRONT RANGE LEAGUE MATCH #3
At Coal Creek G.C.
Team scores — Monarch 334, Legacy 346, Fossil Ridge 349, Broomfield 349, Loveland 365, Fairview 368, Poudre 398, Boulder 438, Mountain Range 457, Horizon 511.
Top individuals — 1. Delaney Elliott, Monarch, 76; T2. Madison McCambridge, Fairview, 79; T2., Jennifer Hankins, Legacy, 79; T4. Carly Gallant, Monarch 82; T4. Andrea Hoos, Legacy, 82; T6. Aili Bundy, Loveland, 84; T6. Anna Roh, Broomfield, 84; 8. Leigha Devine, Fossil Ridge 85; T9. Emma Teuton, Monarch, 86; T9. Kayla Elder, Fossil Ridge, 86; T9. Maddie Kern, Broomfield, 86.
Other Broomfield results — Hope Kim 87; Cassidy Crown 92; Brenna Fankell 97.
Boulder results — Jade Hunter 98; Payton Williams 106; Katie Bush 112; Maya Burgin 122; Laura Osborne 126.
Other Fairview results — Taylor Sunset 89; Kelsey Webster 95; Kate Jordan 105.
Other Legacy results — Kelley Yoshihara 91; Maddy Rodriguez 94; Izzy Hebert 97.
Other Monarch results — Anna Nickerson 90; Liina Neitenbach 96.