CARMEL — Even if Charlie True finished in last place at the IHSAA State Finals this past weekend, she would probably be smiling afterward. She loves the sport of golf that much.
True was far from last, though. In a repeat trip to Prairie View Golf Course, the Mt. Vernon sophomore fired rounds of 77 on Friday and 80 (157 total) on Saturday to finish in a tie for 21st overall.
Last year as a freshman, True finished 11th at the state meet. However, she battled illness this season — right before the Hoosier Heritage Conference meet — at an inopportune time and admitted after her final hole Saturday that she still wasn’t back to 100 percent.
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Still, True smiled as she reflected on a long two days.
But she didn’t use her illness or the conditions over the weekend as an excuse. True knows she can — and has — performed better.
After three rain delays Friday (totaling over three hours) True, among others, was forced to finish three holes Saturday, in addition to the 18 already scheduled.
Nonetheless, despite her lingering cold, True, who also takes lessons at Prairie View, said she would have no problem playing another nine holes after already walking 21. She loves the sport of golf that much.
“One time I played 36 holes in one day,” True said. “I didn’t really have a strategy the whole week; I was just winging it. I played just two holes (during practice).
“The weather delays didn’t affect me at all; I took a nap most of it.”
Also from the county, New Palestine junior Mackenzi Black finished with a final score of 165 in her first state finals appearance, which put her tied for 37th overall. She shot an 81 on her 17th birthday (Friday) and an 84 on Saturday.
Evansville North won its third consecutive state title, while senior Holly Anderson of Columbus North won the individual championship. She finished with a final score of 146 and shot rounds of 75 and 71 on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
True carded 11 pars on Saturday and overcame a double bogey on her first hole. She finished with six bogeys. And on hole No. 7, part of her back nine holes, True sunk a 20-plus foot putt to save from marking another double bogey on her scorecard.
The greens, despite the heavy rains on Friday, played abnormally fast on over the weekend.
According to first-year Mt. Vernon head coach Aaron Shewman, the next step for the talented sophomore is a top-10 finish, which she still has two years to obtain. She has not exceeded and struggled — to her standards — at the varsity level and knows exactly what to fix.
“Hole No. 10 and No. 11 is what got her (on Saturday),” Shewman said. “Starting on the back is tougher. She had a few bad holes but she made up for them for sure.
“Just some short game work work would help her. Her long game is great. Chipping and putting (practice) will help her a bunch.”
Added True: “Last year I was freaking out. This year I didn’t really (stress) as much.”
True finished in fifth (78) at the Lapel Regional at Edgewood Golf Course this year and shot an 89 at the sectional hosted by the Marauders.
Black, the 2015 Hancock County champion, was third (76) at the regional and showed great poise this season with a lingering foot injury. She has received interest from a few small college programs, she said, like Indiana University Southeast.
And although it was her first trip as an individual to state, Black advanced with New Palestine as a team her freshman season. She was the No. 2 golfer on the team that year.
On Saturday, she finished with 11 pars and four double bogeys.
“I didn’t play my best, but I really enjoyed the experience of being there and a part of it,” Black said.
Both True and Black were on the swim teams for their respective schools last season, although Black said she was unsure if she would return. During the summer, both spent time playing on the Indiana Junior Golf Tour, which travels to different courses around the state.
1. Holly Anderson, Columbus North – 75, 71, 146
2. Elyse Stasil, Chesterton – 75, 73, 148
T3. Alexis Miestowski, Lake Central – 78, 71, 149
T3. Reece Malapit, Yorktown – 73, 76, 149
T21. Charlie True, Mt. Vernon – 77, 80, 157
T37. Mackenzi Black, New Palestine – 81, 84, 165
1. Evansville North – 618
2. Westfield – 620
3. Columbus North – 623