Hemler takes 10th place in 5A

Published 8:27 pm Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Gusting winds, tough pin placements and a sinus attack that kept her up much of the night upended Karlei Hemler’s dreams of winning the Texas 5A girls state championship.
Hemler, tied for fourth and only four shots off the lead when play began Tuesday at Wolfdancer Golf Club in Bastrop, never could get any positive momentum going.
She made bogeys on three of her first five holes, temporarily stopped the bleeding with a birdie on eight, but wound up shooting 81 for a 36-hole total of 156.
That left her in 10th place, two spots higher than she finished last year as a junior. Reflective of how tough the conditions were, Hemler still finished only six shots off the 150s shot by Halle Whitney of Magnolia and Caitlyn Lindell of Lake Ridge.
Gabrielle Tomanka of Grapevine shot the low round of the day, a 73 that left her at 151.
“Today was definitely not the day I wanted,” said Hemler. “Today played super tough, what with not getting any sleep last night, to not feeling too well and the wind conditions were just tough.”
Though she didn’t win state, Hemler will go down as the only female golfer from PNG to make it to state. She did it three times. And her top-10 finish is believed to be the highest for an area female player at the 5A level.
“I’ve gotten better each time I went to state. I’m proud of that,” she said.
Hemler, even after a bogey at the 10th hole to go four over for the day, still had a chance to come back and win. The dagger, however, was when her tee shot on the par-3, 13th hole flew the green and rolled into a hazard. That led to a double bogey.
Babe Zaharias Golf Club professional Mitch Duncan, who has worked with Hemler for the past six years, said he was proud of her and the way she competed.
“I thought she played well,” he said. “It was just playing really hard with the wind and some of the pin locations. I am super proud of her.”

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