By ZACH SMITH
Four Points News
Vandegrift’s Sophia DiGesualdo finished her high school golfing career at the state tournament for the fourth straight season.
The lone Viper golfer to make the state tournament this season, she fired rounds of 9-over 81 on Monday, May 15 and 6-over 78 on Tuesday, May 16 to finish tied for 39th place at 15-over 159 at Legacy Hills Golf Club in Georgetown.
“It was a great way for Sophia to end her career,” Vandegrift golf coach Matt Wernecke said. “She didn’t have her best stuff, but she didn’t play bad either. Just the overall experience of getting there was a big plus.”
DiGesualdo ends her time at Vandegrift as the school’s all-time leader in Top 10’s with 22. She has the best scoring average in school history (77.6) and is tied for the most single-season wins with three, which she did as a junior last year.
Individually, her best finish at the state tournament was last season when she shot rounds of 77-81 and finished tied for ninth place and helped the team finish second in the state. As a sophomore in 2015, she and the Lady Vipers come in third place overall.
DiGesualdo dug herself a hole early on in round one, falling to 6-over in the first four holes thanks to a pair of double bogeys and two bogeys. She went just 3-over for the rest of the round with her lone birdie coming on the back nine at the par 3 16th.
The opening holes continued to stymie her on Tuesday as she doubled the 3rd for the second straight round. But she rebounded with birdies on hole seven and nine and shot a 4-over 40 on the back nine to close out the tournament.
“Her short game and putting kind of hurt her,” Wernecke said. “Her ball striking was fine. She just didn’t score as well she could have with where she hit the golf ball. If you don’t get the putter going, it doesn’t matter how well you hit it.”
Traditionally, the Vipers have been a golf powerhouse with both the boys and girls teams qualifying for the state tournament as a team for four straight years from 2013-2016. Last year two Vandegrift boys and girls teams made it to the state tournament. Wernecke was named state Coach of the Year for the accomplishment.
Vandegrift, in its first year in Class 6A, shot rounds of 309-305 at the district tournament this year to finish in third place where only the top two teams advance. Those two teams, Lake Travis and Westlake, finished first and second in the state this season.
“The tough part was being in the same district as Westlake and Lake Travis,” Wernecke said. “They’re two of the best teams in the state in both boys and girls. It wasn’t that we couldn’t compete, we were just in a brutal district.”