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Glew sisters recognized with Mars HOF inductions

Leaders on the links

From fledgling program to a WPIAL championship. That’s the path taken by the Mars girls golf team in just three seasons.

“Some of the girls on that team really improved over the course of a few years,” said Lauren (Glew) Freismuth, a senior when Mars found itself atop the district in 2006. “It was special to be part of that group. It was so much fun and that’s what I remember most. Winning the WPIAL title was just the icing on the cake.”

Lauren and her twin sister, Marisa (Glew) Boyd were the leaders of Mars’ girls for the first three years of the team’s existence, helping the Planets to perfect 14-0 regular-season records in 2005 and 2006. They earned medals in the individual WPIAL and PIAA tournaments before both receiving scholarships to golf at Bowling Green University. They were part of the most recent induction class into the Mars Athletic Hall of Fame.

Their father, Gary Glew, introduced them to the sport at a young age.

Pictured are the five golfers who brought a WPIAL girls team championship to Mars Area High School in the fall of 2006. Left to right are: Lauren Glew, Corrine Dye, Marisa Glew, Brittany Jones and Megan Gibson. The Glew sisters were part of the latest induction class into the Mars Athletic Hall of Fame. Eagle File Photo

“He started to take us to the driving range in Cranberry when we were about 7 years old and he made it fun,” said Lauren. “The first one to hit the ball over 100 yards would get an ice cream cone, things like that, and we started to get better.”

Lauren and Marisa began competing in youth tournaments, first at the local level and then on the national stage, including a trip to Florida. The girls took to competition right away.

“We’ve always been very competitive and liked that part of it,” Marisa said. “But we also met so many people through golf and still keep in touch with many of them to this day.”

When they arrived as freshmen to Mars Area High School in August of 2003, their only option to play golf was to join the boys team and they did. After the season, their father and Dr. William Pettigrew began to gauge the interest at the school for the formation of a varsity girls team. By the next fall, the team was in competition, with Pettigrew serving as the team’s coach.

“I’m sure it took a lot more work to get the team going than Marisa and I realized at the time,” Lauren said. “We ended up with girls of varying levels of experience.”

The sibling rivalry on the links, which exists to this day, was a driving force in the sisters’ desire to improve their game.

“I did what I could to get stronger so I could hit the ball farther,” said Marisa, “but my short game was always good.

“Lauren has always been my best friend. I always wanted to win any time we played, but if I couldn’t, I was rooting for her.”

As juniors in 2005, the Glews helped Mars become one of seven teams to reach the WPIAL team finals. Individually, Marisa tied for third in the WPIAL and placed sixth in the state.

The following year, Lauren shot a 69 at the Western Regional at Tom’s Run Golf Course in Blairsville, placing first by six strokes.

“I just remember every hole seeming so big,” she said. “That’s the best I had ever played and haven’t played that well since then. It was awesome to play so well in that big of an event.”

Shortly after, Lauren closed her high school career by earning a medal with a 6th-place finish at states.

Four years on the women’s team at Bowling Green followed for both golfers.

“It was a big change from high school golf,” Lauren said. “Now you’re playing against the best players in the country on longer, harder courses.

“But it felt like a family and we had a great support system, starting with our coach, Stephanie Young.”

Marisa and Josh Boyd live in Mars and have a 2-year-old son, Parker.

Lauren and Jerry Freismuth also reside in Mars and are parents of two, Liam and Noah.

“The Hall of Fame honor meant a lot to us,” Marisa said. “I have nothing but good memories from high school and our time there set us up for a lot of opportunities.”

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