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Greg DeVillers / Forum News Service, Published September 29 2013

Marsh sisters competitive on, off of golf course for Davies

Grand Forks - Competitive – that would be an understatement when it comes to Kathleen and Jennifer Marsh.

The Fargo Davies High School sisters figure to be two of the top contenders for medalist honors at the North Dakota Class A girls state golf tournament, to be held today and Tuesday at Grand Forks Country Club. Tee off is 10 a.m. both days.

The sisters compete on the golf course. But that competitive nature also carries over into, among other things, the classroom and the keyboard.

“We’re pretty much competitive in everything,” Jennifer Marsh, a sophomore, said. “Obviously, we are in golf. But we are in school, too – I’ll hear from her like, ‘Well, I got this grade in this class when I was a freshman.’ Or, in piano, she’ll tell me she was playing this piece or that piece before I was.

“And it’s a dogfight when we compete. We’ll argue about something for about five minutes. But then we’re best friends again.”

Said Kathleen: “We grew up competitive with everything we’ve done. She likes to win. I like to win. And our most competitive thing is golf.”

Jennifer Marsh placed sixth at the state meet last season. Kathleen Marsh, a senior, will be bidding for a third straight top-five finish at state. She was second as a sophomore and third last season, when she missed a playoff for medalist by one shot.

“On my last shot, I nearly eagled it,” Kathleen Marsh said. “But it hit the pin. Instead, I had a birdie putt. I was disappointed. But that’s life.”

Golf isn’t an all-encompassing part of life for the sisters. It is the only sport Kathleen plays – she’s also involved in activities such as debate, jazz band and science Olympiads. “Those are the things that really excite me,” Kathleen Marsh said. “I played soccer and golf when I was younger. I played them for a long time. But I lost interest.”

Her younger sister plays varsity soccer in addition to golf, but is also involved in many non-sports extracurriculars.

“We try to be more involved, more well rounded,” Jennifer Marsh said. “It’s not just about being in sports.”

The sisters are tied for second in the state in season averages. Dickinson’s Rachel Jahner has a 77.1 state-best average, followed the Marsh sisters at 77.2.

In EDC meets, Kathleen Marsh has been medalist or tied for low score in four meets, one more than her sister. Jennifer Marsh is coming off a title in the East Region meet. Kathleen Marsh is coming off a regional that saw her fade and finish third after shooting a 10 on the par-4 No. 14. Now she takes that hole as a positive.

“Not succeeding all the time can be good for a person,” the senior said. “It exposed me to some mistakes I was making with my swing. I’ve worked hard since then to fix things.”

And if bouncing back from that 10-stroke hole at Grand Forks Country Club isn’t enough incentive, Kathleen Marsh also is looking at her last high school golf meet.

And her last prep meet comes against her sister, where there is the mix of the sibling rivalry and sisterly love.

“I want our team to win,” Jennifer Marsh said. “And I want to win the individual title. If I can’t do it, I hope it’s Kathleen that wins.”