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Adam Green couldn’t believe it.

Not sisters?

So close are Taylor and Taj Singh, sophomore and freshman golfers on Rancho Cotate’s girls squad, so compatible in temperament, so close in personality and interest, and so driven to bring some success to the Rancho golf program, most assumed the two were sisters. I did. Green did.

“You lied to me,” he teased them when the ruse was uncovered just prior to teeing off against Montgomery High at Bennett Valley Golf Course on Tuesday.

Of course, the Singh “sisters” don’t make it easy. They call themselves sisters even though they are cousins. Deep into an afternoon round of golf against Montgomery, the two were still referring to each other as sisters until corrected. “I mean, cousins,” Taylor said.

“You can call us sisters because we practically are,” Taylor said.

The Singhs, along with senior Rachel Sousa, are the centerpiece of Rancho’s resurgent girls golf program. Two years ago, the team folded for lack of interest. Last season, even with Taylor Singh and Sousa, it was difficult. There were forfeits.

“A total of nine came out but only four or five were consistent,” Green, now in his second season as coach, said. “By the end of the year, it was hard for us to field a team.”

But something is changing this season and the change is apparent almost immediately.

“This is the biggest squad I’ve seen you guys have — ever,” Montgomery coach Chris Giovannini said upon checking in the Cougars for their round.

No need to tell Green.

“The fact that we’ve had a team for two years is huge. The fact that we have returners, that’s huge,” Green said.

“We’ve got seven right now and one is a late addition,” Green said. “But the six that I have are extremely consistent.”

Ask any golfer and they will tell you consistency is key. But consistency is hard to gin up when you don’t know who is going to show up for practice or for match rounds.

The Singh sisters/cousins are consistent.

Playing together since they were toddlers, using plastic clubs, the pair would accompany their dads (who are brothers) to the golf course.

“Our dads golfed and they would let us play a couple of holes,” Taj said.

That golf background took on a whole new dimension when the cousins hit their prep seasons because no longer were they just playing, they were pitting their games against those from other schools.

“I love that part,” Taj Singh said. “I’m very competitive.”

“It’s a whole different experience playing with different people than just your cousin,” Taylor said.

But the Singhs like that part, too. They play on weekends. Taj, currently ranked No. 3 on the team behind her cousin and Sousa, is trying to improve her scores so she can be the Cougars’ No. 2 two player. Why? So she can be in her cousin’s foursome.

Always together, always competing.

But Sousa won’t be easy to get around.

Even though the senior just started playing a year ago, she has the bug. Bad. And she’s got the growing game to prove it.

Sousa said last year she and a friend proposed trying out for a sports team. Any team. Sousa figured golf was the only squad that wouldn’t cut her.

“She hated it, I ended up loving it,” Sousa said. Her parents signed her up for lessons.

“It’s slowly paying off,” Sousa said after finishing up with a 57 on nine holes Tuesday.

“Quickly,” Taylor corrected her.

Sousa is consistent, Green said. Not particularly long off the tee or awesome around the green, she just puts in a solid round.

“She’s very good everywhere,” he said.

She will be missed next season, Green said.

Taj promises she’s fighting Sousa for the No. 2 spot so she can regularly play competitive rounds with her sister/cousin.

“I’m determined to get to No. 2 so her and I can be neck and neck,” she said.

Neck and neck in Rancho Cotate colors for at least two more years. Consistency is good. Especially in golf.

You can reach staff columnist Kerry Benefield at 526-8671 or kerry.benefield@pressdemocrat.com, on Twitter @benefield and on Instagram at kerry.benefield.