The Cougars beat runner-up Barnstable by eight strokes at Thorny Lea Golf Club on Wednesday. Scituate's Kaitlynn Washburn tied for second in the individual competition.

BROCKTON -- There is a long and glittery history of golfers from Notre Dame Academy in Hingham, but recently they'd been chasing other teams for the top spot in the state. Last year, the Cougars came up just two shots short of a state title, which was disappointing, but also a motivation for 2018.

On Wednesday afternoon, NDA would not be denied, winning the MIAA state team championship by eight strokes over runner-up Barnstable at Thorny Lea Golf Club.

In the individual competition, Scituate's Kaitlynn Washburn finished in a tie for second place with an excellent round of 5-over-par 79, tying her with Concord-Carlisle's Gabrielle Shieh. Washburn and Shieh trailed the individual winner, Lunenburg's Emily Nash, by four strokes, as Nash shot a 75. Those three were the only girls to break 80.

The top 10 finishers in the individual competition advance to the New England tournament, set for June 22 at Brentwood Golf Club in Keene, N.H. That group includes Cohasset senior Emily Moy, who was seventh with an 85 to earn her third New England trip.

The team competition takes the scores of the top four golfers from each school and totals them. Notre Dame Academy won with 392, followed by Barnstable (400), third-place Wellesley (406) and fourth-place Duxbury (414).

"We had a few good scores today, and obviously all the scores are higher than usual today because the course played really tough," said NDA coach Jay Durfee. "There was longer yardage overall here today and a very thick rough, but from top to bottom we got very solid performances. Notre Dame has a pretty strong tradition, and it is nice to break our recent string (of near-misses) and get that championship. We had two players score 87s (Margot Osterman and Ellie de Andrade, who tied for 11th), and everybody else dug in and did their best."

Kelly Ewanich is one of only two seniors on the NDA team, and she was glowing with the state championship trophy in her hands. (The other members of the NDA team are Molly Cummings, Jackie Hurley, and Mary Dion).

"Today felt like all our hard work paid off," said Ewanich. "We just tried to push through, after losing last year by two strokes. We were all psyched to play here at Thorny Lea, but it is tough since we normally play at Rockland, a short par-3 course. Longer courses are usually tough for us, but we have spent the past two weeks practicing and getting ready for today, and it paid off."

Duxbury was led by Abigail Stetz (98) and Maddie Edmonds (101). While coach Jack Stoddard was happy with the improved finish, after consecutive sixth-place showings, he was frustrated by the course's length.

"I'm happy to see us move up to fourth in the state," said Stoddard. "This is not an easy course anyway, and today they had it at 5,800 yards, which is just too long. When the boys played here in 2016, for instance, they had it at 5,016 yards, so you can see the disparity. The MIAA set this up for the very best players, what you'd see in a college golf tournament, but not for the field. I disagree with that approach, because we saw just one team today break an average of 100 -- that's not fun for the kids."

"We had one senior, Abigail Stetz, break 100, and she shot a 98," said Stoddard. "Last week in the qualifier she shot an 82, and she probably felt she should've shot in the 80s here today, but the course was too tough. But I do want to say Thorny Lea did a very good job of hosting us, and was very good about carts and so on."

In the individual competition, Washburn's second place 79 is even more remarkable when you realize she had a couple of double-bogeys in there, but also an eagle on the sixth hole.

"I'm really proud of her," said Sailors coach Robert Rosata. "Kaitlynn played with two of the best players in the state today, and hung right in there. She also plays for school's tennis team, and they just finished their season, so she's got some tight scheduling. She plays with our boys golf team in the fall, and they love having her, even if she beats them all the time."

"I did get two practice rounds in at Thorny lea, Sunday and Monday, which helped," said Washburn. "I think the big thing for me was that I hit my approach shots really well all day. The length of the course was not bad for me. There were a lot of long par-4 and par-5s, but you see that a lot in tournaments."

Another local player who didn't have any trouble with the longer yardage was Cohasset's Moy.

"Emily Moy graduates as the most decorated female golfer in the history of Cohasset High golf," noted Skippers coach Torin Sweeney. "She puts her time in, plays year-round, and has set the bar very high for Cohasset girls to follow."

"I got in one practice round here, but today was still difficult because of the pin placements," said Moy, who is headed to Hamilton College to play golf next year. "I am a longer player, so if anything the length of this course helped me. There are four par-5s, and I was 2-under on those par-5s, so this course wasn't too bad for me."

"I think Emily is a little disappointed, because her goal was to be in the 70s," said Sweeney. "But she has been in the top 10 golfers in state for three straight years, and she is again today. This is the kind of girl who goes out and plays on Christmas Day, because she loves the game so much, and what she's accomplished in her career is really incredible."