FARGO — Fargo Davies sophomore Lexi Bartley is easygoing with an even-keeled personality. She’s a steady player on the course, and doesn’t get too excited or too down at a given time.
That demeanor served her well Tuesday. Bartley maintained composure as she battled through multiple playoff holes to capture individual medalist honors at the Class A girls golf state tournament at Edgewood Golf Course in north Fargo.
“It feels absolutely amazing. It still hasn’t kicked in yet,” Bartley said.
Bartley outlasted Bismarck Century’s Hannah Herbel in a five-hole playoff. She sank a birdie putt from about 10 feet out on the fifth playoff hole to dethrone Herbel, who was seeking a record fourth individual state title in a row.
"It honestly was right at the end. It almost didn't go in," Bartley said. "But it caught the lip and went in. It was very exciting. Everyone cheered, and it was a good time."
Davies won the Class A team title with a two-day total of 629 (319-310), 20 strokes clear of the field, to sweep the tournament.
The Eagles placed three in the top 10 at Edgewood to win their fourth team title — the same venue where they won their first state championship in program history 10 years ago. They led by four strokes entering the final round.
“We just stuck with the game plan today,” Davies head girls golf coach Lisa Schwinden said. “We didn’t do anything different. We didn't worry about anybody else's score, we didn't worry about what position we were sitting or any of that stuff.”
Davies senior Ava Olson entered the second round in sixth with a first-day total of 78. She registered a 5-over par 77 on Tuesday and finished with a sixth-place score of 155. Teammate Rose Solberg, an eighth-grader, carded an even-par 36 on the first nine holes Tuesday, but shot a 5-over 41 on the back nine. Solberg, who won the East Region individual title a week ago, finished the final round with a 77 and a two-day score of 156. Solberg placed eighth, one stroke behind Olson and Dickinson's Lola Homiston, who finished in a tie for sixth.
“Taking the pictures when we got our plaque was very emotional,” Bartley said. “I think all of us were crying. It’s very emotional and exciting to feel like we actually did it. Because we did.”
Bartley sat five strokes behind Herbel heading into Tuesday’s final round. Herbel shot an even-par 72 on Monday, while Bartley finished with a 5-over 77.
Bartley climbed the leaderboard Tuesday with two birdies and two bogeys in the first nine holes. Herbel started the day with three bogeys and a double bogey on the front nine. Bartley carded a 36, while Herbel carded a 41. The match was tied after 27 holes.
Herbel rallied to par the first seven on the second nine, but gave two strokes back with bogeys on the final two holes. Bartley, whose back nine saw three bogeys, parred the last hole to finish 2-over 74. Tied after 36 holes at 151, they returned to the par-4 10th hole to start the playoff.
Bartley didn’t look at the leaderboard Tuesday. She didn’t even know she was within striking distance of Herbel until someone told her. All Bartley was thinking about was hitting the shot in front of her.
Bartley and Herbel parred the first three playoff holes and birdied the fourth. They played the par-4 14th hole for the fifth and final playoff hole, which Bartley bogeyed in regulation. Bartley finished 26th at state a year ago as a freshman.
“She brought her ‘A’ game,” Schwinden said on Bartley. “She hit some phenomenal shots that I don’t know if I would’ve made them. She just made everything. It was awesome.”
Schwinden, the head professional at Osgood Golf Course in Fargo, said Bartley hit a “beautiful” approach shot to set up the birdie on 14th that ended it.
“I was standing off the green and I just kind of nodded at (Bartley) and said, ‘We got this one, this one is going in. Let’s be done with this,’” Schwinden recalled. “I gave her a wink and she just rolled it in.
“I knew she was going to have to make a move and put some pressure on because Herbel is just phenomenal. She doesn’t make mistakes, so Lexi needed to do something to put the pressure on by sticking it close.”
Williston’s Carrie Carmichael placed third with a two-day score of 152 after she squared three bogeys on the back nine. Wahpeton’s Anaka Lysne was one stroke back with a fourth-place score of 153 (76-77).
Century finished second in the team race with a total of 649, 10 shots ahead of third-place Mandan. Fargo Shanley placed fourth with a two-round score of 660 (335-325). The Deacons had two golfers — Halle Balluff (161, 12th) and Lindsey Astrup (162, 13th) finish in the top 15 individually.