SALTILLO – Mike Mayhew expected big things last Tuesday from his Nettleton Lady Tigers golf team.
The coach wasn’t disappointed.
Nettleton rallied from four shots down to win its second consecutive MHSAA Class I state golf tournament last Tuesday, defeating first-round leader, Our Lady Academy of Bay St. Louis, by 13 strokes at Big Oaks, 329 to 342.
Riley Mayhew, the coach’s daughter, won medalist honors for the third straight season. The freshman, who trailed by two strokes after the first round, shot a 2-under-par second round to finish at even par, 70-74 – 144 and won by nine strokes.
“I played my game today,” Riley Mayhew said. “I was hoping to go under par.”
Nettleton senior Anna Claire Pannell helped the Lady Tigers by shaving 11 strokes off her first-round total. She recorded an 87 on the second day after shooting 98 Monday.
“I improved on my irons and focused more on my putts,” Pannell said of her final round. “I’m so excited. I’m really proud of Riley and the team.”
Mike Mayhew’s advice prior to the second round was simple: Go lower.
“I told Anna Claire to break 90 today and told Riley to break 70,” he said. “I told them if they did that, ‘Y’all would win a state championship.’ Sarah Raper, an eighth-grader, played well, too.
“They’ve worked hard. They came through. I couldn’t be more proud.”
Raper took 11 strokes off her first-round total.
Mayhew sank a 3-foot putt for eagle on No. 8, birdied No. 9 with a 12-foot putt, and bogeyed No 14. She played par golf the remainder of the round.
“I hit almost every fairway with my driver,” she said. “I was sticking my irons to within 10 feet and in. My chipping from 30 yards in was within five feet. I putted well, they just weren’t falling.”
First-round leader Callee Breland of OLA, finished with a 72-81 – 153 for second place. Madison St. Joseph’s Sara Johnson was third with a 78-78 – 156.