By Rob Kiser
Piqua Daily Call
Editor’s Note: This story will appear in the March 26 edition of the Miami Valley Today
Piqua High School senior Kelsey Bachman has been a quick study in the game of golf since her love affair with the game began as a freshman.
And the daughter of Kirk and Anita Bachman made it official it will continue for another four years when she signed her letter of intent to play for Otterbein University recently in front of friends, teammates and family in the PHS commons.
“I am excited (about the opportunity),” Bachman said. “First, I want to address that people are always saying women’s golf is one of the easiest sports to get a scholarship in. That is a big lie. It is one of the hardest. So, considering that, I feel really good about having this opportunity.”
Bachman has made steady progress during her high school career.
After a 55.0 stroke average for nine holes (in the GWOC) as a freshman and earning special mention All-GWOC North honors, she has earned first team All-GWOC North honors the last three seasons after much hard work.
Her stroke average went down to 48.47 as a sophomore and it stayed steady her junior year. Bachman had a 49.29 stroke average and become the first Piqua girls golfer to ever qualify for the district tournament.
As a senior this past season, she lowered her stroke average by almost five strokes down to 44.94 for nine holes.
Piqua girls golf coach during Bachman’s career was Cathy Barhorst and she sees a bright future for Bachman.
“It is always great when you have player go on to the next level,” Barhorst said. “I sure hope Kelsey’s (Bachman) best golf is in front of her. She is going to be playing a lot more golf in college and playing against better competition. That is going to help her a lot.”
“I am going to be going from playing once a day to playing three times a day,” she said. “And playing 36 holes a day. So, that is going to be a big adjustment.”
And Bachman knew after spending time at Otterbein, it is where she wanted to do it.
“I would say it is a stronger program than the other schools I received offers from,” Bachman said. “And all the girls on the team were more friendly and I really liked all of them.”
The biggest attraction was coach Brian Booher.
Booher has been a PGA Professional for 18 seasons.
He has twice been named the Ohio Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in women’s golf.
He guided the Cardinals to the OAC championship and an NCAA bid in 2015, while Otterbein finished second in the conference in 2014, 2016 and 2017.
“My coach is a PGA Professional,” Bachman said. “So, I am really excited about that. It is a really strong program, so I know I am going to have to work extremely hard (to make an immediate impact).”
Bachman knows she will be exactly where she wanted to be.
“I knew as soon as I picked up a golf club as a freshman, that was something I wanted to do in college,” Bachman said. “I just wish I had taken the game more seriously sooner.”
But, Bachman has made up for lost time quickly —- giving her the opportunity to continue to grow in the game she loves at the college level.
Piqua Daily Call Sports Editor Rob Kiser at firstname.lastname@example.org