Two seasons. Two all-district performances. Republic sophomore golfer Izzy Benson is headed back to the Class 4 State Tournament for a second straight time after shooting an 89 at Schifferdecker Golf Course in Joplin Thursday. That placed her 11th overall and earned all-district recognition.
Benson overcame a double-par score of eight on one hole by making clutch shots at big moments. The biggest may have been on the par-three ninth hole. Benson left her seven-iron off the tee a little short of the green, but she didn’t let it bother her.
“It was okay. It was uphill, (and) the greens are really fast here. I chipped it in, ran up the hill to see if it made it in, and… it was like a Rocky moment. I said ‘Yeah!’ and threw my hands up.”
Earlier this year, Benson said one goal was to control her emotions when things go wrong. She was able to do that Thursday, even after shooting an eight on one hole.
“It’s really hard to keep it together after getting double par, especially because I know what my ability is and I know that’s not how I normally play,” she said. “But just knowing that I can’t change it, I can’t go back and redo it, I just have to keep going… Now I’m off to the next hole and let’s make this one better.”
Benson will compete at the two-day state tournament at Twin Hills Country Club in Joplin October 17-18.