It’s with a source of pride that Abi Scheidecker holds down the No. 1 spot for the Oregon girls golf and bowling teams.
She can look across her own living room to see the person who is nipping at her heels – her twin sister, Ali.
The twins, 15, are sophomores at Oregon High School, and form a potent 1-2 punch at the top of the lineup in each sport. In golf, however, they are not paired together during dual matches.
One golfer is paired with Haley Repass, while the other is with Abby Martin. It’s the twins’ way to keep the peace on the golf course.
“When we golf together, I think we do more bickering and name-calling,” Ali said. “We’ve never called each other names in bowling – it’s always been golf where we yelled at each other.”
Abi nods her head in agreement while her sister speaks.
“It’s just a lot easier for us to focus on our own game,” Abi said.
“I think they were raised to be pretty competitive,” Oregon coach Jim Spratt said, “and they’ve found an outlet in golf and bowling. Any sport they’d want to try, I think they’d be pretty successful. They’re just competitive kids.”
Abi averaged 179 pins per game for the Oregon bowling team, while Ali was right behind her at 176.
This fall, Ali will pull double duty. In addition to golf, she’ll be a cheerleader for the fresh-soph football team. In the spring, she’s planning a return to the track team. As an eighth grader, she was a member of two sprint relays that qualified for the IESA state meet.
On the golf course, Abi averaged 46 strokes per nine holes as a freshman, while Ali checked in at 49. They both do most of their golfing at Sunset Golf Course in Mount Morris, and each are under the tutelage of local legend Salley Wessels.
When asked what aspect of her game has improved the most this summer, Abi didn’t hesitate. She said chipping and putting, a point of emphasis every day with Wessels.
“The short game is what she’s all about,” Abi said.
For the second consecutive year, the Scheideckers, Repass, and Martin will form a four-girl team. It’s the bare minimum to field a team, and their efforts to recruit more girls to give the sport a try proved fruitless.
“We didn’t have any luck,” Abi said. “At the end of school last year, we tried to motivate and tell people it’s a sport pretty much anybody could enjoy, and there was just nobody that was interested.”
That leaves just the four of them, but they did quite well a year ago. They went 4-3 in dual matches, placed third in the Big Northern Tournament, and earned a team sectional berth after taking third at the Class 1A Byron Regional with a 438 total.
The Hawks finished 12th at the sectional with a team score of 455. A score of 399 was needed to advance to state, something that could be within reach if the Scheideckers, Repass, and Martin can all put it together on a given day.
“We have to have faith in our team,” Abi said, “because it’s just the four of us. Every score counts, so nobody can have a bad day.”
Parents: Roger and Terri Scheidecker
Reside: Mount Morris
FYI: Top two girls golfers and bowlers at OHS, and were sectional qualifiers in both sports as freshmen. ... Abi averaged 46 strokes per nine holes a year ago, with Ali at 49.