Mia Ayer2

Midway’s Mia Ayer gets her last chance to win the Texas individual title on Monday at Legacy Hills Golf Course in Georgetown.

Staff photo— Jerry Larson

Midway golfer Mia Ayer shot a 74 to grab a tie for fifth after the first day of the Class 6A girls state tournament on Monday at Legacy Hills Golf Course in Georgetown.

Ayer, who trails the leader by six strokes, birdied three straight holes midway through her opening round, dropping to 2-under par after sinking an eight-foot putt on No. 11. Her birdies on No. 9 and 10 were tap-ins.

“If she can get the putter going and make a few putts from 10- or 15-foot range and get about four or five birdies (Tuesday), I think she’ll stand a good chance to medal,” Midway girls golf coach Harvie Welch said.

Ayer ran into little trouble throughout the day with only a few minor bumps in the road, including a bogey on No. 2 after landing in a sand trap and another bunker encounter on the back nine.

“Outside that, she hit the ball really solid,” Welch said. “Hit a lot of fairways, had a lot of good two-putts. The speed was really good on her putting.”

Ayer is looking to improve on her eighth-place finish in 2014 as a sophomore. She finished in the middle of the pack last season.

Lorena’s Steelie Priest carded an 86 in the Class 4A tournament at Onion Creek Golf Club in Austin, finishing the day in 21st place.

In the Class 2A tournament, Crawford’s Hanna Williams sits 12th after shooting a first-round 88. In the team standings, Hamilton ended the day in seventh with a 405, led by Kameron McKandless’ 92. Dawson’s team is 12th.

Robinson’s Chase Allison shot a 78 to cap the first round in the middle of the pack at the Class 4A boys tournament, sitting 12 strokes behind the leader.

Wiliiam Paysee of Belton is six shots off the 6A lead with an opening-day 76.

In the 2A boys’ event, Jax Horton of Moody shot a 78, Rosebud-Lott’s Colton McCeig carded an 81 and Mart’s Bryson Nail notched an 88.

Class 1A and 3A begin their tournaments on Wednesday.

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