She was just one of the guys for two years, including last spring when The Prairie School finished fourth in the WIAA Division 3 state golf tournament. She finished third on her team and exactly in the middle of the 52 finishers.
But Jordyn Wyzgowski didn't belong to that fraternity this season. That's because the Hawks finally fielded a girls squad, where her talents began to blossom in her new environment.
Wyzgowski earned medalist honors at about half of her regular-season events, competing for top honors in the others. She saved her best for the Little Chute Sectional on Tuesday, where her round of 71 (37-34) outdistanced runner-up Alexa Arant of Fox Valley Lutheran by six strokes.
The 16-year-old Wyzgowski's performance at the Mid Vallee course in De Pere made her an individual qualifier for the D-2 state competitions at Madison's University Ridge, which are scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.
Her round was the second-best sectional score in either division, one shot behind Kettle Moraine junior April Ohlendorf's 70.
Wyzgowski said that playing on a boys team, especially at the state meet level last year—where she totaled a 169 (88-81)—was a great experience and helped her grow emotionally and on the links.
"As a freshman it was a little more difficult," she said. "Like at the county meet, I finished third and they were all looking at me and talking about how I was using the closer tees. I ignored them the best I could. But as a sophomore, everybody was used to it and they knew I wasn't going to go away."
Well, yes and no. They don't have to worry about competing against her, but they sure can follow her progress.
Coach Carrie Massey, who directed the boys junior varsity program for seven years, said that her star pupil has enjoyed an amazing season, which she capped with a wonderful display at sectionals.
"Two weeks ago at Neenah she ripped off five birdies in a row, but she was on her game, no doubt," Massey said of Wyzgowski's latest showing. "She started with two bogeys but then settled down. She had to punch through the trees and make some bunker shots, but her putting was spectacular and she drove the ball well. She had an eagle, but her (71) wasn't surprising. She was the second one off the tee, so she was done before any rain came, but she stayed focused despite the windy conditions."
Massey said that Wyzgowski still has a vast storage of untapped potential.
"She played a lot of junior events last summer, and that really thrust her to another level, and she's still learning how that feels," Massey said of the Dixon, Ill., native who won't turn 17 until December. "Playing with the girls calmed her down. Jordyn has spent a lot of time and energy to get to this point, and she's maturing as a person and as a golfer."
Massey said those traits are evident on and off the course.
"She's a good role model, shows good leadership qualities and is our captain," Massey said. "Jordyn is competitive by nature, but she doesn't like to stand out from the crowd. Once she gets comfortable with her ability level, she'll only get better."
Wyzgowski said she'll learn from her success and continue to reach for loftier goals, which include competing for an NCAA Division I program, where she'd like to study fashion or graphic design. She plans to start visiting colleges in the near future, with a long-range goal of playing professionally.
But for now, she's trying to take it one step at a time.
"Playing with the boys helped because the competition was a lot stronger," Wyzgowski said. "I always pushed myself to be as good as they were and not be looked at as ‘the girl.' During the summer I wasn't as good as I thought I could be, but at the end and when school started, I don't know. Something clicked and I started to play better.'
That's a scary thought, at least for the competition. And that starts next week in Madison.
"I would love to win, of course, but my goal is to finish in the top five," Wyzgowski said. "There will be some good girls there, but if I play like I can, I'll do well and be right there."