Lancaster’s White defends state title, earns player of the year honor


Huntington Bank/Ohio High girls golfer of the year Allie White

If someday you can find Allie
White on LPGA leader boards, there will be a small contingent in central Ohio ready to say they told you so. After concluding her prep career in October with a second straight state title, the Lancaster High senior and North Carolina recruit appears to be on
her way to becoming one of the state's top golf products ever. Accordingly, she is the Huntington Bank/Ohio High girls golfer of the year.

If in a decade’s time you are able to regularly find the name Allie White on LPGA leader boards, there will be a small contingent in the central Ohio golf community ready to say they told you so.

After concluding a sparkling high school career in October with her second consecutive OHSAA individual medal, the Lancaster High School senior and University of North Carolina signee appears to be on her way to becoming one of the state's best-ever golf products.

Accordingly, she was named as the Huntington Bank/Ohio High Player of the Year in girls golf.

“Allie's rare,” said her swing coach, Eagle Sticks pro Kelly Morrow. “You don't come across players like her every day.”

Able to drive about 250 yards off the tee, White is obviously long for a junior player.

She believes though, that it is improvements around the green that have helped her move forward in the game.

“I've always been able to hit it far,” White said. “But recently I've started putting better. That's been the difference.”

Morrow countered by saying he thinks White's putting stroke is a good one, but that the difference on the green has come between her ears. He said that playing overseas and in most of this country’s biggest junior events has given her big-game polish.

“Controlling your nerves is the difference,” Morrow said. “It's a matter of playing in a lot of big tournaments. Obviously she's done that.”

Though she first picked up clubs at age 5 and was playing Fairfield County events by 8, White didn't start playing the game at the national level until just before her freshman year of high school. That's when White began making the rounds of the American Junior Golf Association's regional events.

White said she didn't start to envision golf being a career until this past summer when she posted several low scores in national events.

One of those moments came in July when she finished as the runner-up in the 2007 Betsey Rawls Girls Championship at White Manor Country Club in Malvern, Pa.
To perform so well in what is one of the country's premier junior events was an eye-opener.

“Going against a lot of good golfers in the national tournaments I realized I can do it too,” she said. “I realized I might be able to go toward a professional career.”

As of December, White was ranked the eighth best golfer in the country by the AJGA, and she has been as high as sixth.

White notched top-five finishes in four of the six events she played during the 2007 season.

And as nice as the OHSAA state championships are, Morrow said it is in the AJGA events one can see White's potential on a larger scale.

“They set those courses up longer, more the like the conditions they play at college and LPGA events,” he said. “Plus you see where you are against the best in the country.”

Even more impressive is that White has reached the lofty perch from a part of the country not always conducive, weather-wise, to playing elite golf.

Of the top 30 girls on the AJGA's national ranking, 17 are from either Florida or California and only White is from the Midwest.

Morrow isn't eager to heap any extra pressure on his pupil in the form of career predictions. With that said, he had to allow that he thinks anything is possible.

“She definitely has the tools to do it,” he said. “She's got the skill and the mindset.”

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