High school freshman makes a hole-in-one on her first shot in competition
Scott’s round began on the par-3 eighth hole. She pulled a 7-iron from her bag for the 90-yard shot and aimed toward a pin that was cut behind a bunker. It didn’t feel like that good of a strike to Scott, and the marshy area in front of tee box kept her from seeing where it ended up. But the yelling around the green told the remarkable tale.
Scott, 14, had one-hopped it in the hole for an ace.
“I was just frozen,” she told Golfweek by phone after school on Friday.
Her mom, Robin, and her grandfather were by the ninth hole when it happened, trying to find their way around Lake Doster Golf Club. Her father, Matt, didn’t see it go in either.
“I gave her a high-five and a hug,” said head coach Matt Rayman, “and I think I scared her to death because she didn’t know what was going on.”
Stephanie had never carded a par or a birdie in practice. She was going to walk up to the hole, pick up her ball and move on to the next tee before Rayman told her stop and take some pictures.
She shot 53 that day, breaking 60 for the first time. Rayman was so caught up in the excitement of the day that he still has no idea which team won the overall match. Stephanie is the first girl in Otsego history to record an ace, and yes, she did keep the ball.
Rayman has coached high school golf at Otsego for more than two decades and started the girls’ program 11 years ago.
“I’ve seen 22 years of freshmen dribble it into the weeds, skull it over the green, whiff completely or whatever it may be,” Rayman told mlive.com, “so for that shot to be executed to perfection, it was awesome.”
Stephanie knew that aces were rare in golf, but she’s been shocked by the amount of media attention her accomplishment has received. She’s been interviewed by four local television stations and two newspapers, finding the exercise more nerve-racking than the golf shots.
“I’m enjoying the game a lot more now,” said Stephanie, who first picked up a club around age 7 but didn’t really start playing the game until this summer when she decided to play a fall sport. She also plays club soccer now and hopes to compete on the high school team in the spring.
Rayman is director of golf at Lake Doster Golf Club, a semi-private course that hosts both Otsego and Plainwell, and said that family memberships are up 200 percent since COVID-19 hit.
“We have so many kids playing, families playing,” he said. “I cannot keep up with the range.”
No telling how many more will be inspired to pick up a club after one freshman’s extraordinary shot.