By LENZY KREHBIEL-BURTON
CATOOSA — Emily Pippin ended her high school golf career wrestling with a challenge Monday morning.
The challenge wasn’t from one of the 23 other golfers on the Oklahoma Coaches Association girls’ All-State golf team. It was from the par-70 Cherokee Hills Golf Course.
“The course was really long and there was a lot of hard walking,” the recent Tahlequah High graduate said. “It was way more difficult than Pryor Creek or Cherry Springs — it was up there with the course we played at Ardmore (at state).”
That challenge showed up across the board for the girls All-State selections, as only three pairs shot at or below par.
Pippin and her East team match play partner, recent Henryetta graduate and Rogers State University signee Morgan Brown shot a 76, dropping a 3.5-0.5 decision to Duncan graduate and University of Central Oklahoma signee Allyson Wilcox and Comanche High graduate and Southern Nazarene University signee Emilee White. Pippin and Brown tied with the Stephens County duo on a scramble portion in the early rounds, but weren’t able to keep pace for the remaining holes.
“The first round went well,” Pippin said. “Had a little trouble on the back, but that’s nothing out of the norm. I usually struggle on the back anyway.”
Despite Pippin and Brown dropping their match play round, the East earned a sweep on the links, with the girls picking up a 14-10 decision and the boys cruising to a 17.5-6.5 win.
By finishing as one of the top two Class 5A golfers from the eastern side of Oklahoma at the state tournament in May, Pippin earned one last tee time for Tahlequah High School. She is the only Cherokee County student-athlete selected to participate in any of the OCA’s 2013 All-State games this week in Tulsa.
“It means way more than I can even explain, knowing I’m bringing something back to my hometown and representing Cherokee County as a whole,” Pippin said.
2012 Class 6A champion Allison Sell from Edmond North and four-time Class 2A runner-up Maci Arrington from Hinton shot a combined 68, the lowest score of any tandem. Both women have signed collegiate letters of intent — Sell with Oklahoma Christian and Arrington with Arkansas State.
Meanwhile, Pippin is preparing to move on from competitive golf and focus on life as a criminal justice major at the University of Oklahoma.
“I’m going to miss it, the competitive high school side, but I’m ready to move on and I’m not planning on really playing in college,” she said. “I’ll still play, but it’ll mostly be for fun and I think I’ll enjoy it more.”
East 14, West 10
(Girls All-State tournament at Cherokee Hills Golf Course)
Baylee Price/Gabbi Shelton (East) def. Caroline Gooden/Haley Hill (West) 3 and 1
Maci Arrington/Allison Sell (West) def. Nadia Majidi/Katie-Lee Wilson (East) 2.5 and 1.5
Alyssa Goodnight/Megan McDaniels (East) def. Desa Brewer/Kennedy Hansen (West) 4 and 0
Kina Boone/Michaela Osborne (West) def. Alyssa Brown/Kelsey Cotham (East), 3 and 1
Emilee White/Allyson Wilcox (West) def. Morgan Brown/Emily Pippin (East) 3.5 and 0.5
Kailey Campbell/Faith Lasiter (East) def. Markie Hawkins/Darby Morgan (West) 4 and 0.