Marquette girls golf star Ava Bartosiak was extraordinary on Thursday and helped lead the Explorers to a fifth consecutive girls golf regional title. The funeral for Ava's grandmother, Betsy, was only a few days ago and she dedicated the round to her beloved grandma. (Photo by Dan Brannan)ALTON - Marquette Catholic girls golf star Ava Bartosiak was on a mission Thursday at the Belk Park Golf Course to honor her beloved grandmother - Betsy Bartosiak - with a team regional championship. Ava’s grandmother’s funeral was only a few days ago and the Explorers’ golfer dedicated her entire journey in the regional tournament to her.

Ava scored an 84 and helped push Marquette to a team regional crown and advance to the sectional next week.

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Marquette Catholic Head Girls Golf Coach Deb Walsh said she could not be more proud of Ava for her efforts and all of her girls on Thursday. Marquette captured its fifth straight girls' golf title on Thursday. Walsh said Ava thought a lot about her grandmother during the tournament and knew how much it would mean to her that the team won the regional and qualified for the sectional.

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“It was a difficult time for Ava, but she is dedicated to the team and her sport,” Walsh explained. “She is a super competitor and loves to play golf. She said before we started she was playing for grandma. I think her grandma was looking down on her and was super proud of Ava.”

Coach Walsh said the entire Marquette Catholic team attended Ava’s grandmother’s funeral, which meant everything to the Explorers' golfer.

“I just think Ava’s performance on Thursday was a great show of her mind power to come back two days after the funeral,” she said. “Her grandmother was a huge part of her life. I know she thought about her grandma all day and her performance was extraordinary.”

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