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South’s Carter, D-B’s van der Biest set sail for state

By STEVE WILMOTH, TriCitiesSports.com • Sep 26, 2017 at 12:45 AM

MORRISTOWN — Sullivan South’s Kara Carter and Dobyns-Bennett’s Isabella van der Biest have been playing together since both first picked up a club. Next week, they’ll both be playing in the TSSAA Division I Large School tournament at Willowbrook Golf Club in Manchester.

Both qualified for the state trip with sterling rounds Monday in the Region 1 Large School tournament at the Country Club of Morristown.

D-B’s van der Biest fired a career-best 66 to win individual honors, and Carter logged a 2-under-par 70 to finish as runner-up.

“I thought Isabella played great today,” said D-B coach Bill Darnell. “She only missed one green and had 33s on both nines.”

Van der Biest’s victory completed a sweep of the conference, district and region championships.

“My putting was strong today and I was able to make some long putts for birdie,” she said of Monday’s round. “I am glad to be able to represent Dobyns-Bennett as an individual but was really hoping our team could go.”

Van der Biest’s round helped put the Lady Indians in good shape in the team race, but Cocke County got a 72 from Alayna Perryman and a 76 from Lauryn Munn to win by one shot.

“I was thinking, ‘We got this.’ We had two chances with pars on the last hole to win or force a playoff but came up short,” Darnell noted. “Congrats to the Cocke County girls and hope they do well at state.”

Elizabeth Schnede’s 83 gave D-B a 149 team total. Katerina Scott finished with an 85.

“I have loved being on the D-B girls golf team with these girls,” van der Biest added. “It has been a great experience and it would have been awesome for us to all be together at state ... we were so close.”

Carter eagled the first hole and played steady the rest of the way.

“Kara got off to a great start and was 3 under with three to play,” said South coach Anthony Richardson. “Pretty impressive with freshmen finishing 1-2. It’s going to be fun watching those two battle the next three years and at the state tournament next week.”

The third qualifier was Morristown West’s Savannah Haney, who shot a 73.

Science Hill’s boys won a second straight regional title after getting a 69 from Jackson Skeen and 73s from Sean Anderson, Carter Counts and Gavin Nickels. The Hilltoppers’ total of 288 was well clear of runner-up Tennessee High (304).

Carter’s Jake Mynatt birdied the first extra hole to win a playoff over Cherokee’s Stephen Owen after each finished regulation at 4-under 68. Both advanced to the state tournament, along with Tennessee High’s Jet Tickle (70).

D-B got four rounds in the 80s, but the young Indians weren’t a factor in the team scoring.

“Anytime your season comes to an end there is disappointment, but I think they guys realize this could be the start of something special,” said Tribe coach Mike Holt. “Two-thirds of our team and half our varsity were playing middle school golf this past May. To go from middle school golf to competing for a region championship and a trip to state in span of five months has tested the freshmen, but they will be better for it.”

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