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A chat with the champ: Bay Port’s Baranczyk does it again

By Rich Palzewic
Sports Editor

KOHLER – Bay Port senior golfer Jo Baranczyk said she always wanted to be a state champ.

Now she can say she’s won three consecutive Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) individual Division 1 state titles.

Baranczyk won her third straight title May 18 at the Meadow Valley Golf Course at Blackwolf Run in Kohler in runaway fashion.

Baranczyk, a North Dakota State University commit, shot a 1-under par, two-day total 143 during the 36-hole tournament.

She beat runner-up Ellie Frisch of Middleton by 11 shots.

“It feels great,” Baranczyk said. “Four years ago when I was a freshman, I was hoping to win one title, but now I’ve got three. I’ve worked hard for it. It was a fun four years.”

Baranczyk finished fifth during her freshman year before winning the next two titles by one shot.

“This year wasn’t quite as dramatic as the last two, but I guess that’s a good thing,” Baranczyk said. “I figured I was in good shape entering the last nine holes, but I didn’t look to see where I was. When (Bay Port) coach (Jeff) Johnsen said to me on the 13th hole, ‘Just play your game, and you’ll be fine,’ I figured I had at least a couple-shot cushion.”

Baranczyk said she was happy with her game overall.

“I played the most consistent golf I’ve played all year,” she said. “My approach shots the second day were good. The course plays shorter, so I could play lots of wedges into the green, which plays to my strength. I didn’t take advantage of the par-5s like I should have, though.”

Baranczyk becomes only the fourth girls’ golfer in WIAA history to win three state titles.

Girls’ golf is normally a fall sport, but with the COVID-19 pandemic gripping the country last year, the WIAA gave schools the option to move their fall sports to this spring, which most area high schools did.

“It was frustrating not to play last fall, but it gave our team more time to bond and practice,” Baranczyk said. “The fact other schools got to play last fall and we had to sit back and watch was tough. We just wanted a chance to play this spring. All the girls on the team improved their games from last year.”

Baranczyk said she’s aware many talented players didn’t golf in the alternate fall championship this spring because they participated last fall.

“It doesn’t take away from my title, but yes, there were lots of good players missing,” she said. “You never know what could happen, so it’s hard to compare scores, especially with different weather conditions. They also only played 27 holes.”

The Bay Port girls’ golf team finished runner-up in the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 1 Team State Championships May 18 at Blackwolf Run in Kohler. From left, Avery Dudra, Abbey Beranek, Myah Balaporia (alternate), head coach Jeff Johnsen, Adalyn Johnston, Brittney Koeberl and Jo Baranczyk pose with their trophy. Submitted Photo

Bay Port also had a strong showing as a team, finishing runner-up, one shot behind Middleton.

“We were all hoping for a team championship as well, so that was disappointing,” Baranczyk said. “We did our best and made a strong comeback the second day. Because we didn’t win, my victory wasn’t totally satisfying.”

Bay Port golfers Avery Dudra (158, +12 – seventh), Adalyn Johnston (166, + 22 – tie 11th), Abbey Beranek (174, + 30 – 18th) and Brittney Koeberl (183, +39 – tie 23rd) rounded out the lineup.

De Pere’s Jolie Guyette competed as an individual and also had a strong showing with her third-place tie score of 155 (+11).

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