Heading to the 18th hole, Haley English of Meade County thought her team might have pulled off an upset. After closing out the round Tuesday afternoon with a double bogey, she thought she had jeopardized her team’s chances of winning the 5th Region golf tournament.
When English returned to see the leaderboard, she realized the Lady Waves had maintained their lead over three-time defending champion North Hardin to capture the team title and earn the lone team spot for the state tournament next week.
“I’m walking down No. 18 nervous as heck,” English said. “I’m like, ‘I have to par,’ and I end up doubling that hole.”
English was golfing in the final group and knew her group was the only scores not yet posted. She was concerned only with Hailey Coleman’s from North Hardin, last year’s region individual champion.
“We came back (to the leaderboard) and I added up our scores on the calculator,” she said. “I was like, ‘Guys, we got it.’ And then they put the scores up and we realized we won it.”
The Lady Waves shot a 344 team total at the Elizabethtown Country Club, besting North Hardin by 4 strokes. Jenna Pike shot an 83 to lead Meade County as she finished seventh overall.
“I did not start out very good,” she said. “I started out with a double and I just kept fighting through. I just knew I couldn’t get down in my head because when I do that, I just completely go downhill. I knew I wanted to do it for the team. It feels really good to win.”
English, who shot 86, said the team was upbeat heading into the day, sharing encouraging messages through a group text.
“Our focus was to stick to our game because we all know we can play,” she said. “We all know we can shoot good. Especially at this course because all of us have shot good at this course before so we knew we could do it again.”
After finishing with an 83 for sixth place, Coleman said she was disappointed in her play, but more disappointed that the team missed a chance to compete together at the state tournament.
“I could have shot 6-over (on the par-72 course) and we would have won,” she said. “I’m not out here for me. Now, did I want to come and did I want to repeat? Of course I did. But I wasn’t here for me. I wanted to take my girls to state.”
Leading the Lady Trojans was sophomore Ella Scherer with a 79 to finish third.
“I’m happy with staying in the 70s,” she said. “That was one of my goals was to stay in the 70s.”
Scherer, Coleman and the other top 7 individual finishers qualify for the Leachman KHSAA Girls State Golf Tournament on Oct. 9-10 at the Bowling Green Country Club. Central Hardin sisters Katie and Paige Gray also qualified.
“I didn’t finish super strong, but it was my best score,” said Katie, who shot 77 for a second-place finish. “Striking was very good for me. It was probably the best I’ve hit in a while.”
Paige was coming off a two-week layoff because of COVID-19 quarantine, but said she was able to put in a practice round Sunday for the tournament.
“I got a little bit of an unfortunate break,” she said, adding she shot an 84 in the practice round. “I was really worried coming into today.”
After a rough start, Paige, a senior, said she finished the round strong with an 82 to place fourth.
“I was really nervous going into the back 9,” she said. “I had two doubles on the back, a birdie and the rest were pars and I’m just so proud of my last four holes. I can breathe again. I was not breathing the entire round.”
Macie Brown of Bullitt East won the individual region title with a 73.