Van Dyk has been a multi-sport student-athlete at STC, but golf has clearly been the one she has excelled the most at. After qualifying for state last year and an 11th place finish, Van Dyk had her hopes set on another shot at this year. She did not want to forgo her junior year of opportunity.
"I had accepted the fact that all was going to be able to do was part of the PGA summer season," said Van Dyk. "I thought the entire spring high school season was lost."
"I was surprised when five days before the district tournament, my doctor said I could start playing as long as I kept to a three-quarter speed swing. I guess all the hard work in physical therapy had paid off."
The STC team qualified for the regional tournament at New Hampton at the Waverly district, with a 367 team score. Van Dyk then qualified at regional for the state tournament as an individual with a 79.
This year the 3A and 4A classes competed at River Valley Golf Club, Adel, and the 2A and 1A classes at Otter Creek Golf course, Ankeny. Next year they will be reversed.
At River Valley
Van Dyk's foursome started at hole number five, the number one handicapped 495-yard par five hole with water hazard. Van Dyk had a double-bogey seven on the hole, but led her group with that. She followed that with a par, bogey, double-bogey, bogey, bogey, bogey. Then on the par three number 12, Van Dyk's drive left her an eight foot putt for a birdie, which she sank with authority.
Things started to turn in her favor after the birdie. She bogied 13, then double-bogied 14, before reeling off seven straight pars. She finished her first round with a bogey on number four, which gave her a 43-41-84 for the day,
Day 2 - Number 11 Start
Van Dyk's group started on the par five number 11 hole Wednesday. Van Dyk carded a bogey 6 to start the round. "I got off to slow start again on the second day," she said. She followed that with two pars, then shot double bogey, bogey, bogey, bogey and double bogey on 18.
Van Dyk played the front nine five over on the second day, starting with a bogey on one, then a birdie on two to stay even. She bogied three, then double bogied four and five. She pared four, then got her second birdie on the front side with a three on the par four number seven. She finished the front nine with a bogey and a par.
She finished out the tournament with a par on the par four number 10 hole for a 41-44-85 for day two, giving her a two-day total of 84-85-169.
Jessie Sindlinger, Charles City, repeated as state champion with a 68-75-143. Charles City were team champions with a two-day total of 350-353-703.
"I think I could have played better, but all things considered I was happy to be able to play at all," said Van Dyk.
“We’ll be back next year,” she said. “I think we have a real shot to get the whole team to state next year. That’s the goal.”
She is cleared now for normal play. "Paige (her younger sister) and I have a lot of Iowa PGA tournaments lined up to play this summer," she said.
This chip shot on number 16 put Van Dyk to within inches of the cup for a par 3 on the opening day of competition at the Iowa Girls High School Tournament.