Loupe fights adversity to return

By: GEOFFREY STOUTE
That Berwick High School junior Bethany Loupe is back at the Class 3A state girls’ golf tournament for the third consecutive year is one thing, but the path she had to take to get there is another.

Loupe, who recently qualified for state golf tournament after finishing in fifth place at the Division II, Region II golf tournament at the LSU Golf Course, has had to overcome an unspecified injury suffered last year that hurt her offseason training and has affected her play during this season.

While she couldn’t be reached for comment before she hit the links today at 8:30 a.m. for the first of two days of 18 holes of golf, her coach, Robby Robertson said that she is at 80 percent of her health right now.

“She really just got back into golf in January where she could actually play five or six real matches,” he said.

He said Loupe still is working on regaining her stamina and her strength that she had before.

“She hasn’t been able to weight lift and train like she did before,” he said.

Still, though, it hasn’t stopped the local product from returning to state’s highest platform for Class 3A golfers.

“She’s competitive,” Robertson said. “That’s for sure. That’s what it’s all about. The road getting there is half the battle. Once you get here, you never know what’s going to happen.”

While everyone would like to win the state title, Robertson said he hopes Loupe can pull out a top five finish this year.

Among the golfers that qualified for the tournament in the singles competition, Loupe’s regional score of 84 ranks her 10th in the state.

The top regional golf performances was recorded by Lana Hodge of Ouachita Christian, who shot a 70 in her regional play at Oak Wing Golf Club in Alexandria.

One advantage Loupe had when she entered today’s competition is she is familiar with the course because it is one she played on last year at state.

Of course, the same holds true for any golfer who advanced to state last year.

“The more you know the course, hopefully the better you should do,” Robertson said. “It’s not like a basketball court or a baseball field where dimensions are the same. Golf is very diverse.”

While the competition is sure to be tough, Robertson said he is proud of Loupe’s accomplishments this year.

“She’s a sportsman, and she’s competitive, and I’m proud of her for coming back the way she did,” he said.

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