After another golfer hit Paulak’s ball by mistake, the senior carded her worst score of the round on the par-5 ninth hole on the Outlaw Course at Paradise Pointe Golf Complex. The quadruple-bogey nine finished her round with a 16-over 88 — good enough for ninth and one of the berths for the upcoming Missouri State Golf Championships.
“I had a good round,” Paulak said. “I’m hoping this year I can get somewhere at state. I think these past two rounds I’ve been able to actually focus and not make as many mistakes so now my game is getting tighter. It is what it is. I still had a good round other than that hole.”
Now a two-time state qualifier, Paulak hit a tee shot on No. 9 to a blind landing in the fairway. St. Teresa’s Ellie Shorter’s tee shot ended up a few yards further in the rough, but she failed to identify her ball before hitting Paulak’s toward the green.
Paulak walked to the remaining ball and discovered it was not her hers.
After retrieving the mistakenly hit ball, Paulak’s second shot went into the woods to the left of the fairway. She tried to hack the ball out but lost it after a ricochet. A drop from the lost ball penalty saw her hit her fifth shot over the green before chipping on and three-putting to finish the trying hole.
Shorter incurred a two-stroke penalty for her error and finished with a bogey-six for a 21-over 93 — one stroke off of a state-qualifying mark.
Park Hill sophomore Sam Paulak earned her first state berth. A 12-over 84 earned her fifth place, eight strokes back of co-winners Jailyn Marshall and Mariah Peters — both of team champion Blue Springs.
Park Hill South, which qualified four individuals out of district play, finished tied for sixth in the seven-team team competition with a 416 — 82 strokes behind the Wildcats. The Panthers failed to qualify anyone through to the state finals, set for Oct. 13-14 at Twin Hills Country Club in Joplin, Mo.
Platte County’s Ashleigh Beemer also fell short of the qualifying mark by two strokes. The Pirates senior qualified for state as a freshman and sophomore but failed to advance out of sectionals last year while playing on a sprained ankle. This year, her round derailed on her second hole — the par-5 11th.
Beamer lost her tee shot and put the subsequent provisional ball in the water. She carded a quadruple-bogey nine on the hole. Teammate Avree Sealy shot a career-best 101 after qualifying for sectionals for the first time.
“The first nine, I played was a little rough,” Beamer said. “I liked the second nine though. It was hard because I kept thinking about the score and a couple of the holes that were not too great. We rebounded.”
Sam Paulak rebounded from a tough district showing (24-over 96). Now, she will once again make the trip to state with her sister, but this time as a participant.
“It’s nice getting to go down with my sister,” Sam Paulak said. “It’s her senior year, and I’m glad I get to be with her. Hopefully, we can do well together. It’s more serious than just another golf tournament. You still want to relax while you’re playing. You just have to focus on there’s two days, not worrying about the day before, just focus on the next day.”