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Dooley electric on back nine at state


October 08, 2008
Friday was a tale of two rounds for North Harrison senior golfer Allison Dooley at the IHSAA State Golf Championship.

The morning featured cool temperatures and little wind and the afternoon was filled with sunshine and an increase in the wind. Dooley's round was parallel to the weather's, cool early, but hot late.

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North Harrison's Allison Dooley shoots for the green on the back nine during the state finals Friday. (Photo by Brian Smith)
Making the turn for the final nine at The Legends of Indiana Golf Course in Franklin, Dooley found herself a disappointing 10-over par after firing a 46. The steady senior put behind her two double bogeys and a triple bogey on the first nine and annihilated the back side.

She bounced back to shoot an 84, after going just 2-over on the final nine. The score missed the cut (79) for Saturday.

"I am happy with the back nine," Dooley said. "I wish the front nine was better. I was kind of embarrassed at the beginning. But in my mind, I decided to play the course and not the people."

On the 10th hole, despite a solid drive, she took a bogey on the lengthy par-5. From there, Dooley started to roll.

A par on No. 11 was followed by a lengthy par putting on No. 12 that found the bottom of the cup.

The par-3 13th hole nearly provided her first birdie. Putting across the green toward the pin, Dooley left the putt an inch short from dropping.

After fighting through the sand on No. 15 for bogey, Dooley set up her lone birdie on the day at the next hole. Her third shot on the par-5 landed two feet from the pin, making the birdie a virtual tap in. She had another shot at a birdie on No. 17, but just missed a 5-foot putt, settling for par.

Dooley finished the back nine 2-over par and an 84 overall, much better than she anticipated shooting when making the turn.

"I don't really know what happened," Dooley said about the front nine. "I felt I couldn't hit the ball at all and lost confidence. On the range I was hitting three left and three right. But we quickly figured out what was wrong."

She steadied and found a groove on the back nine and said she wished she could play nine more and omitted the first nine holes.

"I knew it was no big deal and I had nothing to lose," she said. "I just hit the ball a lot better on the back nine."

Dooley is the lone female golfer in Harrison County to reach the state finals. She also made the event as a freshman, when she shot an 86 at the same course.

"As a freshman I just wanted to learn from the experience," Dooley said. "I wanted to make state every year, but I made it back my senior year."

The state finals capped a big year for Dooley and the North Harrison girls' golf team. The Lady Cats went undefeated during match play, won the Mid-Southern Conference title and also their first Sectional team title. Dooley was also medalist at both MSC and Sectional.

"The team did awesome this year," Dooley said. "As a team we wanted to win sectional, and we did. My goal was to get back to state and I am happy with that."

Dooley plans to continue her golf career next season at Bellarmine University in Louisville.

Hamilton Southeastern won the team title with a team score of 627 over two days. Richmond finished second with a 637. Richmond sophomore Trisha Witherby was top overall individual with an overall 1-under par 143. Witherby played behind Dooley on Friday and drew a large ovation when she chipped in for eagle on the second hole. Witherby set an 18-hole state record with a 66 on Friday.

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