Lady Tigers earn berth in state tournament

Posted Monday, Apr. 22, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Jessie White’s not complaining. A less-than-stellar second day at regionals wasn’t enough to dampen the enthusiasm of White and her Mansfield girls golf teammates.

Mansfield finished third in Lubbock last week to earn a berth in the Class 5A state tournament April 29-30 at Morris Williams Golf Course in Austin.

“That’s a perfect way to end it,” White said of finishing her high school career off with her first trip to state. “I’m excited about it.”

White, a Stephen F. Austin signee, shot a two-day total of 151 for a share of ninth place overall. But White, who won the 7-5A meet, shot a 73 on the first day, while her second-day score climbed to 78.

She wasn’t alone in her day-two struggles. Mansfield trailed first place Coppell by a single stroke after the first day and had gained the overall lead before struggling on the back nine.

“I think I could do better at state because the second day [at regionals] didn’t go well,” White said. “We struggled but still got to state, so that’s good.”

Mansfield coach Chris Coursey said he thinks his team will perform up to its capabilities at state. Mansfield dominated the district tourney, finishing 103 strokes lower than second-place Midlothian.

“They should be able to compete well,” Coursey said. “But they won’t be the favorites going in.”

White and her teammates have never been to state but Coursey has guided two Mansfield squads to the season’s top tournament: 2005 and 2006. He recalls that the ’05 team was easy-going and liked to joke around. The next season, though, the players acted more serious and determined on the golf course.

Coursey sees parallels between his current group and the ’06 team. “They have similar qualities with those guys,” he said.

White said team chemistry is one of the biggest reasons why this year’s team has reached a high level. “Team building is one of the major factors. A lot of us started improving at the same time.”

White’s own game has reached a new level this year. But it’s not just that she improved her drives, her approach shots, her short game or putting. Instead, it’s a little bit of everything.

“Consistency was the main thing,” she said. “Just better overall play.”

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