Alex Milan | Sr., Steinbrenner
Why we picked her: We could point to her postseason. Milan won the Class 1A, District 14 tournament at Cheval, was the Region 5 runnerup at Bardmoor and posted Hillsborough County's second-lowest two-day score (151) at the state tournament. Her 35.5 nine-hole stroke average for the year also went into our thinking. But the overriding factor? At a level where golf remains a team sport, Milan was the consummate team player. Despite a demanding junior golf schedule, Milan competed in every match for the Warriors, guiding the second-year program to a 10-3 record, district title, region runnerup finish and team berth in the Class 1A tournament.
Proudest achievement: In terms of the whole season, it's the state tournament berth her team earned. In terms of a singular moment, it's the school-record-setting nine-hole round of 143 Steinbrenner posted against Academy of the Holy Names at Heritage Harbor. Milan shot 3-under 33 that day, highlighted by a 12-foot downhill birdie putt on her last shot of the afternoon to edge teammate Michelle Stein by a stroke.
Future plans: Milan, courted by a number of major colleges, signed with Florida State in November.
Did you know? Nothing illustrates Milan's commitment to Steinbrenner more than her team's Sept. 2 match against Plant, scheduled the afternoon before Milan was to begin play in a prestigious American Junior Golf Association event in Greenville, S.C. After earning low-medalist honors in the match with a 36, she hopped in her family's Saturn Outlook and drove all night with her mom, dad and two sisters to make Greenville event's practice round the next morning.
Kelsey Eisch, Jr., Plant: Class 2A, District 10 champ finished in tie for 15th at state.
Laura Hendee, Jr., Plant: Edged Madison Opfer by a stroke to win the Class 2A, Region 4 title.
Julia McQuilken, Jr., Riverview: Had eight birdies to win 2A, District 11 (6-under 66).
Madison Opfer, Jr., Durant: Tulane commitment was third at 2A state tourney.
Erika Wardzinski, Sr., Durant: Cougars' anchor was sixth at region.
Coach of the Year
Vernon Korhn, Plant. The venerable former county athletic director, coaching his alma mater in retirement, guided the Panthers to Class 2A, District 10 and Region 4 titles, and a seventh-place finish at the 2A state tournament.
Brittany Bradshaw, Sr., Wharton
Belinda George, Jr., Plant City
Nina Hwang, Jr., Wharton
Emmy Martin, Fr., Academy of the Holy Names
Caroline Sorrick, Sr., Newsome
Blake: Summer Moser; Durant: Kerrie Reinhardt; East Bay: Abby Rolfe; Freedom: Alexis Copeland; Gaither: Morgan Litchfield; Academy of the Holy Names: Mariah Diaz; King: Steffi Yo; Plant: Laura Binkowski; Plant City: Kellyanne Hurst, Kelsey Jensen, Shelby Johnson; Steinbrenner: Sara Bair, Michelle Stein; Wharton: Shannon Clark, Jacqueline Higgins