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Oak Grove’s Brantners make golf a family affair

Grovers head coach Laine Brantner has enjoyed the opportunity to coach, make memories with daughters Sophie, Josie and Sylvie this season.

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Fargo Oak Grove girls golf coach Laine Brantner stands with his daughters Sylvie, left, seventh grade, Josie, a sophomore, and Sophie, a senior, on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, at the Fargo Country Club. All three girls will compete in the Class B state golf tournament Monday.
Michael Vosburg/The Forum
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FARGO — While the 2022 golf season has brought much success the way of the Fargo Oak Grove Grovers, it has also brought countless memories for coach Laine Brantner and his three daughters, senior Sophie, sophomore Josie and seventh-grader Sylvie.

With the state tournament looming , Laine has been enjoying the moments as they come, but hasn't had the chance to reflect just yet.

“I probably haven’t spent as much time looking back on it and I will, obviously, as time goes by,” Laine said. “But, it’s been a lot of fun. I’m really fortunate. My three girls get along really well. So, it’s been a lot of fun to watch them grow.”

On top of the memories, the opportunity to help his daughters — and the entire Oak Grove team — learn a sport he loves is an opportunity Laine cherishes.

“It’s been fun for me because I grew up playing golf and played golf in college, myself. That’s one of the reasons I started coaching was because, watching Sophie at the time, if you’re not a coach you have to stay 25 yards from them and you can’t talk to them,” he said. “I love the game and love teaching it. That’s probably my favorite thing about being a coach is teaching the girls how to play, not just my daughters, but all the girls.”

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Sophie will graduate at the end of this school year with plans to play golf at Bethel University in St. Paul. In the meantime, she has become a role model for her sisters and teammates.

“Sophie being the leader of the team, and someone my younger daughters look up to, is just a great leader for them and the team,” Laine said. “She does a really good job of being positive and being uplifting for all the girls. It’s been really fun to see her grow into the young lady she is today.”

While Josie and Sylvie will still be around come this time next year, Sophie moving onto the next step in her life has reminded Laine to enjoy moments with his daughters that much more.

“One of the things that you realize with kids is that you don’t have a lot of time with them,” he said. “With Sophie going off to college in a year, I’ve just really appreciated since Aug. 1 — quite frankly it’s one of the reasons I love golf — I get to spend time with my kids for several hours. If you go play golf with your daughters, you’re spending four hours with them.”

Possibly the most rewarding aspect of the whole journey for Laine has been the chance to watch his daughters grow as people.

“It’s a little cliche, but golf is really a way you learn about people,” he said. “Are they honest, are they positive, are they uplifting? How are they from a competitive side? All of those things.

“It’s really been fun for me to see that in my kids. That’s one thing I’ll probably always remember; watching them grow into the people they’re becoming.”

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