E.A. Sports Today

Almost home

White Plains girls, Dyar get the third leg of mythical Grand Slam they hope culminates in a state championship

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

Three down, one to go

Layne Dyar and the White Plains girls golf team moved another step closer to winning a mythical Grand Slam culminating in a second straight state championship Tuesday when they won the 4A-5A North substate title at Anniston Country Club.

They shot a solid 242 as a team.

The Lady Wildcats have won the first three legs of their championship goals — Calhoun County, sectionals and substate — of their championship goals. Dyar has been the medalist in all three.

The White Plains boys have won those three as well on their way to a state tournament double next week at Hampton Cove.

“Actually, I was talking to the boys about that the other day,” Dyar said. “I just had this idea, guys, we’re all going for the Grand Slam right now. That’s exactly what I told them and we were really excited about it because we have a chance to do it as both teams.”

Dyar shot 76 Tuesday making three straight birdies late (and lipping out a fourth) to turn around a mediocre round and move into medalist contention. The senior was 7-over-par for her round through 13 holes — 5-over on the first four holes on the back — then birdied 14, 15 and 16, and lipped out a birdie putt on the par-5 17th.

“We wanted to go low as a team and that’s what I was worried about, separating ourselves as a team because everything’s for the team,” Dyar said. “When I was 5-over on the first four holes on the back everybody looked a little bit down and I knew we just couldn’t let them down.

“Coach (Marcus) Harrell said you need to pick your head up, you need to keep going and make some birdies, so that’s what I did.”

The Lady Wildcats also counted an 81 from Hanna Dyar and an 85 from Morgan Prickett. They were a combined 8-over at the turn and were 11-over on the first four holes on the back.

Last year, on their way to the school’s first state championship, they won only the substate and state, so they should have a lot more momentum gong to the state finals.

“They’re the four goals at the beginning of the year and the possibility of achieving all four in the same year, that’s pretty special,” Harrell said. “I think there’s some added pressure on the girls this year, trying to repeat for the state championship, but I’ve been very proud of the way they’ve fought through everything.”

Russellville qualified as the second team from the substate. Alexandria failed to qualify as a team for the first time, but junior Abby Stevens made it as an individual, dropping an 18-foot birdie putt on the final roll with her opponent in close to win the first hole of a sudden-death playoff.

It had the same dramatic pause at the end as Tiger Woods’ chip shot on 16 in the 2005 Masters they turned into a Nike commercial. The playoff hole Tuesday was 16.

“It was the longest putt I had all day,” Stevens said. “I just read the green and saw how it was going to break. I didn’t think it was going to break that way and then it just went in and my heart was beating so fast.

“I caught my breath and said, Oh God, we’re going to have to play another hole,’ and then it went in and I started breathing again. I didn’t realize it at first until I heard my mom scream and then I was like ‘Oh my God,’ and then, ‘God, thank you.'”

Alexandria's Abby Stevens is greeted by her mother after sinking a long birdie putt in a playoff to earn a spot in the state tournament.

Alexandria’s Abby Stevens is greeted by her mother after sinking a long birdie putt in a playoff to earn a spot in the state tournament.

At Anniston Country Club

Team scores
White Plains 242
Russellville 284
Fairview 289
Alexandria 295
St. John Paul 309
Boaz 354
Wilson 354

Medalist: Layne Dyar, White Plains
Qualifiers: Anna Fassacht, Brooks; Abby Stevens, Alexandria (playoff)

Individual scores
Layne Dyar, White Plains 37-39–76
Anna Fassacht, Brooks 38-41–79
Hanna Dyar, White Plains 36-45–81
Abby Stevens, Alexandria 43-40–83
Robyn Blakey, Leeds 40-43–83
Lindsay Rogers, West Point 41-43–84
Morgan Prickett, White Plains 40-45–85
Shelby Tacon, Madison County 42-44–86
Morgan Moon, Russellville 44-45–89
Maci Yeager, Fairview 46-46–92
Bailey Tubb, Russellville 46-47–93
Dalys Mullican, Fairview 46-48–94
Taylor Snow, Alexandria 49-46–95
Erica Miller, St. John Paul 45-50–95
Haley Stevens, Crossville 46-49–95
Lexee Cunningham, White Plains 48-48–96
McKayla Stover, Danville 49-47–96
Hannah Enright, St. John Paul 51-49–100
Kaylee Bryant, Deshler 50-51–101
Ashton Moore, Russellville 48-54–102
Annie Ozment, Childersburg 52-50–102
Aladie Howse, Fairview 46-57–103
Benyapa Thamibal-udom, Boaz 49-55–104
Josie Willis, Russellville 49-58–107
Shelby Bevis, Wilson 47-62–109
Alexa Weaver, St. John Paul 56-58–114
Kayley Donaldson, Deshler 57-58–115
Morgan Allen, Boaz 57-59–116
Haley McElroy, West Blocton 53-63–116
Allison Arenth, Alexandria 54-63–117
Hannah Stuggs, Wilson 58-60–118
Ana Dahlke, Fairview 56-70–126
Kady Richardson, Wilson 61-66–127
Miranda Phillips, Wilson 50-79–129
Madison Ray, Boaz 68-66–134
Madeleine Breithaupt, St. John Paul 70-74–144

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