Allee Mainord’s trip to the UIL state golf tournament was a learning experience she hopes can help her get back there next year as a wise “old” senior.

Mainord, a Stephenville High School junior, competed Monday and Tuesday at Plum Creek Golf Course in Kyle in the Class 4A girls state tournament. She finished tied for 23rd with Lee Ann Parker of Lampasas.

Monday’s round for Mainord on the par-71 course was an 80. She followed that with a score of 88 to wrap up her competition Tuesday, for a combined total of 168. Parker, a member of the Lampasas squad that finished second to Andrews in the team standings, had rounds of 83 and 85.

Mainord had qualified for the state tournament with her performance earlier this month at the Region I-4A tournament in Lubbock by finishing with the second-best score among the individual medalists not on a state-qualifying team. On the opening day in Lubbock, she had posted a score of 75.

The state championship was earned by Bohyun Park of Carrollton Ranchview, with a blistering 62-64—126. She won by an incredible margin of 24 strokes over Tristan Gabbard of Lamar Fulshear (74-76—150).

“I was happy with how I played yesterday,” Mainord said Tuesday night of Monday’s round. “Overall it was a great experience. I got to play with some amazing golfers and I got to see some phenomenal golf.”

Mainord said that on Tuesday she had a rough stretch that included a double bogey on the 12th hole, prevented her from equaling or topping her first-day score.

“I tried to find my way back, but I got in a slump. There was a little stretch on the back where I beat myself,” Mainord said, referring to difficult holes that had water hazards and doglegs. “I was able to lay up (on the greens) wherever I needed to, but there were two holes where I went in the water and it cost me.”

The cost was a one-stroke penalty for each shot in the water.

Meanwhile, Park — a sophomore who won the individual state title for the second year in a row, in spectacular fashion — was in the group playing right behind Mainord’s group. Mainord got to watch on a couple of holes as Park was on her way to an overall mark of 16 strokes under par.

Mainord said Park had such long drives off the tee that she was able to get on the green in two shots on the par-5 holes — compared to three shots for the mere mortals in the rest of the field.

SHS girls golf coach Patti Williams said Mainord was disappointed with her second-day score because she “just didn’t play well like she knows she can.”

Williams said Mainord wasn’t able to bounce back strong from the bogey on hole 12 Tuesday.

“It’s hard to say what happens to you in golf. Everyone that plays golf knows that when you finish playing a round, you always find shots that you could have played better than you did, because you have before.

“She will definitely learn from this experience and she is in the top 23 in the state. Not a bad accomplishment. There’s no doubt she will work hard trying to get back there next year.”

Mainord said she will be practicing year-round, even in the winter — with some time off for Christmas and extreme weather conditions, of course — to get ready for her senior year.

“I know what I need to work on to get back to state and I’m hoping to come out my senior year stronger than I was this year,” she said.