TWIN FALLS — Tayllore Ward’s past nine days have been full of golf success, both on and off the course.
On Tuesday, May 1, Ward drained a hole-in-one and was the girls medalist with a score of 75 at a Great Basin Conference tournament. That performance netted her a Times-News prep athlete of the week honor. On Monday, she shot a 78 to win a district title as an individual, and it helped the Bruins capture the girls team title.
Two days after that, Ward was surrounded by family, friends and coaches at Twin Falls High School for a college signing ceremony. The senior finalized her decision to play for Dixie State University on Wednesday.
Ward received an offer from North Idaho College, she said, and she drew interest from the University of South Dakota and Concordia University-Portland. But the Division II school in St. George, Utah, won her over.
“The weather was the best, and I liked the town,” Ward said.
She was also impressed with Dixie State’s business program, and she has some family members who live in the area.
Ward first got in touch with the Trailblazers in the fall, after her instructor and Canyon Springs Golf Course PGA professional Zach Abels contacted coach Lindsey Stucki to recommend Ward. Stucki watched Ward play at a tournament in Las Vegas shortly thereafter and eventually extended a scholarship offer.
Ward didn’t pick up golf until about four years ago. She played volleyball growing up and didn’t consider golf until she was preparing for her freshman year at Twin Falls.
“I just thought I’d do it for fun,” she said, “and I actually liked it, so I just continued to play.”
With help from her father and Abels, Ward immediately became a strong golfer. As a freshman, she placed seventh at the 4A state tournament. She followed that up with a second-place trophy as a sophomore, and she finished fourth last spring.
Ward hopes to add an individual state title to her resume next week in Rathdrum while she gets through finals this week. Wednesday’s ceremony was a welcome break to the hectic final days of her high school career.
“I didn’t think I would end up playing college golf,” she said, “so I’m super stoked that it actually did happen.”