By Adam Yoder
NAPPANEE – The NorthWood Panthers girls golf team has had quite a run of success in recent years. There have been a lot of great players that have had tremendous individual success at the high school level and have gone on to play college golf in the NCAA and NAIA.
However, heading into the fall in 2021, coach Adam Yoder will have something the program has never had and that’s two all-state returnees in seniors-to-be, Cybil Stillson and Breanna Goss.
Each were named to the 20-member All-State Team by Indiana High School Golf Coaches Association last fall. While NorthWood has had several players on this team over the years, it is the first time they have had two in the same season.
Goss most recently finished 21st out of 88 players in the Indiana Junior Golf Spring Series at Purgatory Golf Club in Noblesville. The field was loaded with a lot of the best players in the state from the 2021 graduating class all the way down to the class of 2026.
On playing these tournaments, Goss noted, “I love meeting new girls and making friendships with others that enjoy the game as much as I do. I also enjoy getting to play at a ton of different courses. Every course plays different and really challenges me to know what parts of my game I need to keep improving on.”
Stillson, who was not in the field at Purgatory, recently completed her second trip of the new year to Florida by competing at the Hurricane Junior Golf event at PGA National in West Palm Beach. Stillson finished 10th in her division on at the event on a tour that brings in players from all over the world.
On all these trips, Stillson noted, “Its first a great family time. My grandparents came down to PGA National and that was very fun. As for these events, getting to compete with players from around the world and the US allows me to experience new people, but at the same time, these players all have the same goals as I do, so its exciting and rewarding to be around them and compete with them.”
Both players’ spring and summer schedules involve a myriad of events at a plethora of levels. There will be USGA, IWGA, IWGA PGA, Hurricane, AJGA, IN JR Golf Masters Tour, and Indiana Junior Golf Tour events on the two Panther stars’ schedules between now and the first official high school practice of the IHSAA girls golf season on July 30th.
All told, each will play at least 20-25 competitive rounds in May, June, and July.
While most of their play will be in their home state from now until high school season, Goss has events scheduled in Illinois and New York, while Stillson has one in Wisconsin in addition to a few other qualifying events that could lead to out of state appearances.
The two have different personalities and different ways of approaching the game, but both have developed a mutual respect over the years.
On Stillson, Goss noted, “it’s nice having a teammate, like Cybil. She has achieved so much. It has really pushed me to work so much harder, to improve my game, to help contribute to the team’s success during the season. Cybil and I both put in a lot of time practicing and playing in tournaments since we have similar goals, and both understand that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to improve our games.”
On Goss, Stillson commented, “First, Breanna is such a positive person. On the course, on the bus, and around the team. She’s also works so hard to improve her own game that its really inspired players on our team to work hard to achieve their own goals and our goals as a team. I’m very fortunate to be her teammate and she’s a great asset to our program.”
Coach Yoder is spending a lot of time on his phone looking at online leaderboards following his top two players these days.
“Our program philosophy has always been that in developing tournament golfers, there is no substitute for tournament rounds, and while we’ve had a lot of players buy into and build that culture, Breanna and Cybil have taken that to a whole new level,” Yoder said.
Both players have multiple tournaments in May and are scheduled to cross paths at the Indiana Jr. Golf Spring Series event at Kokomo Country Club May 15-16.