NIWOT — No matter how Niwot senior Mya Ostrom performs at the state golf tournament this week, she'll have a remarkable story to tell about how she arrived there.
It goes back to the start of the season, when Ostrom let Cougars' coach Ed Weaver know from the get-go that playing in the regional tournament might be out of the question.
Ostrom had looked at the schedule and figured there was no way of rescheduling her International Baccalaureate test, slated for the same day as regionals, but Weaver had a plan.
He tasked his assistant, Isaac Pena, with looking into things from the testing side and, "we kept getting stuff like it can be changed and no it can't be changed, or everybody taking the test agrees to take it early, and we just knew that wasn't going to work," Weaver said.
So if the testing wasn't going to change, it was going to have to be on the golf side. And Weaver proposed to Northridge coach Tim Kohler and the Grizzlies athletic director about Ostrom going off early by herself. After everyone, including the Highland Hills Golf Course staff, agreed it would work, they were a go.
"I got there and just made sure I was all stretched out, and I really wanted to make state because Ed had just done so much to get me there," Ostrom said. "I was just so grateful."
Ostrom, who had Pena with her scoring and making sure everything was legit, didn't have her best day. It took her 3 hours and 30 minutes to get around in 97 shots, a score she thought wouldn't be good enough to get in.
After the round, Pena shuttled her back down to Niwot, where they arrived at 12:13 p.m. for the start of the 12:15 p.m. IB test. And the events of the day had obviously taken their toll, because "I fell asleep halfway through the test," Ostrom recalls, "But I had a whole two hours, so I felt like I did pretty good considering."
It was shortly after the test ended, that her phone began to ring and it was her father telling her she needed to get back up to Greeley because she was in a three-person playoff for the final two spots to go to state.
After frantically asking around for a chauffeur, Ostrom's classmate Isaiah Mauck agreed and off they went back up I-25. They got to talking so much on the way, they missed the Greeley exit and didn't realize it until they were five miles past at the Windsor exit.
They got on Google Maps, only to find out their new backroads path was full of construction and detours and "everybody started to freak out," she said.
Thankfully Weaver and others stalled long enough for Ostrom, whose young sister Halie had already qualified, to get there. She hopped out of Mauck's car, threw her bag on her shoulders and stepped to the tee with Mountain View's Camryn Polansky and Montrose's Ally Nichols.
None of the three girls played the first playoff hole exceptionally well, but it was Ostrom that escaped with a triple bogey, rolling in a four-foot knee-knocker to earn her spot.
But was it the best triple bogey she had every made?
"Yes. Definitely," said Ostrom, who will be going to the South Dakota School of Mines to study mechanical or petroleum engineering this fall and play golf too.
Now both Ostrom's and teammate Julia Solem head to state — and especially Mya — with nothing to lose and just have fun at the Country Club of Colorado in Colorado Springs.
"My goal is just to play bogey golf," said Ostrom, who will go off the first tee on Monday at 8:57 a.m. "It's just a beautiful course and it's going to be so much fun."
Said Weaver: "I equate everything to business and we had a great sales year and this is our trip to Mexico to celebrate."
Both Niwot and Frederick — with Payton Wallace, Olivia Fauerbach and Erin Baum — will have full teams in Colorado Springs. Both Erie and Skyline will have two competitors each.
The Class 5A tournament will be at Boulder Country Club and Broomfield will be the lone full team scoring from the BoCo region with Meghan Vogt leading the way after a second place finish at regionals.
All eyes should be on Fairview's Kelsey Webster, who finished tied for ninth last season at state and is coming off a brilliant 3-under par 69 in the regional tournament at South Suburban.
The 3A tournament is at Elmwood Golf Course in Pueblo and Holy Family sophomore Hailey Schalk will be the odds on favorite to defend her title.
Jefferson Academy's threesome of Aubri Braecklein, Trinity Stuart and Lauren Alberts won a regional crown at the Olde Course in Loveland, bettering Kent Denver, and will have a chance in Pueblo.
BOCO STATE GOLF QUALIFIERS
Monday and Tuesday at Boulder Country Club
Anna Roh (No. 1 tee, 8:30 a.m.)
Nicole Fatovic (1, 8:39)
Meghan Vogt (1, 8:48)
Lauren Hirsch (1, 9:06)
Kelsey Webster (1, 9:51)
Mia Blackard (10, 10:27)
Yulim Kim (10, 10:27)
Monday and Tuesday at Country Club of Colorado (Colorado Springs)
Madison Cantwell (No. 1 tee, 8:30 a.m.)
Mara Wissman (1, 10:27)
Payton Wallace (10, 8:48)
Olivia Fauerbach (10, 8:57)
Erin Baum (1, 9:06)
Halie Ostrom (1, 8:48)
Mya Ostrom (1, 8:57)
Julia Solem (10, 9:06)
Lexi Ekern (1, 10:00)
Ella Movick (10, 10:18)
Monday and Tuesday at Elmwood G.C. (Pueblo)
Heather Stauter (No. 1 tee, 8:39 a.m.)
Hailey Schalk (1, 9:15)
Aubri Braecklein (10, 9:15)
Trinity Stuart (10, 9:24)
Lauren Alberts (10, 9:33)