By John Shinn
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — Oklahoma’s Taylor Schmidt made a clutch birdie at the 18th hole to force a playoff with Grace Na. However, Schmidt, who graduated from OU in the spring, saw her U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links run end when Na birdied the first playoff hole.
“I lost on the last hole to a bird,” Schmidt said. “I can’t complain. It’s how it goes.”
She won’t go home and sulk over it either. Schmidt said she will be back at the Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club today to cheer on teammates Anne-Catherine Tanguay and Chirapat Jao-Javanil. She has to because it will be part of her job beginning in the fall.
OU women’s golf coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell, who caddied for Schmidt during the event, has hired Schmidt as a graduate assistant.
“I’ll be able to get my masters and I’ll still be able to play golf,” Schmidt said. “After I get my masters, I’ll decide whether to turn pro, because I really want to get into coaching as well. Golf isn’t done for me.”
Talented caddie: Playing at her home course gave Tanguay many caddie options. The one she chose, however, is still years away from being in college. Brad Dalke is on her bag this week.
Dalke is one of the best junior players in the world and has committed to play at OU. However, Dalke won’t graduate from high school until 2016.
“We just connected through mutual friends. I knew how good a player he was,” said Tanguay, who is entering her senior season in the fall. “I was really lucky. We have a similar style of readying putts and it has helped because we see eye-to-eye.”
Dalke lives in Hobart with his parents, but is spending this week with his grandmother in Norman.
“From tee to green, I don’t have to do a whole lot,” Dalke said. “She knows all the lines and all the slopes on the greens she can play off of. On the greens, she tells me what she thinks and I tell her if I like it or not. If we like it, she’s good. If not, we talk about it some more. It’s gone really well so far.”
In-state ties continues: The two Oklahoma State players who reached match play both advanced Wednesday. Julie Yang rolled to a 4-and-3 win over Lakareber Abe and Kelsey Vines topped Clariss Guce, 6-and-4, to advance.
Kentucky assistant women’s golf coach Lucy Nunn is originally from Lawton. She extended her stay in her home state with a 5-and-4 win over Lacey Fears.
Extra holes: Of the 32 matches Wednesday, five needed extra holes to find a winner. Four were decided on the first playoff hole. The longest match of the day went to Cindy Ha. She topped Kaitlyn Papp in 20 holes.