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Girls golf makes strides under leadership of Dixon, Baljepally

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All good things must come to an end, and the same is true for golf captains Alex Dixon and Vinila Baljepally.

Baljepally competed in her final event at districts last week, but she’ll cheer on her co-captain Dixon at the state tournament next week.

Dixon struggled at districts, but recovered in the regional competition to qualify for state.

“It’s just a great story because she shot probably the worst round of her career at districts,” Bearden golf Coach Ron Rupard said. “Granted, the worst round of her career is still good enough to make it to regionals and for her to to turn around two days later, and make it to state was great.

“She gets to perform her senior dreams and play again at the state level.”

The pressure was on, but Dixon had the support of her coach, family, and friends.

“I could see she was getting a little nervous,” Coach Rupard said. “I think she then realized once she saw all of us watching that she might have a shot to move on to state.

“Then she finished strong and got to move on to state.”

Dixon shot an 80 to advance to the state finals.

Dixon has plenty of supporters and one in particular just so happens to be her co-captain Baljepally.

“She is very resilient because she’s in all AP classes, and she is in so many clubs,” Dixon said. “She has consistently been our number three for the last three years.

“So when Emma [Brown] or I have a bad day, we can look to her to be the person to put a score in for second.”

Baljepally has to manage a number of activities, but still manages to keep the love for the sport and her team.

“The entire golf team is so close and supportive,” Baljepally said. “Alex and I have been golfing together since middle school.

“I am so grateful to have met her through golf, and it is so much fun to play with her.”

Added Coach Rupard: “It’s going to be hard to fill the shoes of those two girls. They will be greatly missed.”