Tampa Bay Times' all-Tampa Bay golf teams

All six Times' golfers of the year reached the state tournament. They are, from left, St. Petersburg's Blake Dyer, Freedom's Terese Romeo, Sunlake's Kelly Harris, Newsome's Tyler Bakich, Mitchell's Mike Spinger and Osceola's Haydyn Gibson. SAM OWENS   |   Times
All six Times' golfers of the year reached the state tournament. They are, from left, St. Petersburg's Blake Dyer, Freedom's Terese Romeo, Sunlake's Kelly Harris, Newsome's Tyler Bakich, Mitchell's Mike Spinger and Osceola's Haydyn Gibson.SAM OWENS | Times
Published December 6 2014
Updated December 6 2014

Pinellas Boys Golfer of the Year: Blake Dyer, Sr., St. Petersburg

Best round: Shot 7-under 29 at the Vinoy Golf Club in a dual match against Jesuit. "That was big for me. I'd never done that before."

Best finishes: Tied for third at Vinoy Classic (70); first at districts (70); tied for first at regionals (74); tied for 15th at the Class 3A state tournament (75-73—148).

Most memorable moment: Dyer said it was the play of his team all season. "We weren't really one of the favorites to make it through, but we did. I was really proud of the team."

What's next: Dyer will play golf at the University of Florida.

Future goal: After college golf, Dyer said he would like to give professional golf a try. "I'll give it a chance. I'll probably give it three or four years and if it doesn't work out, it doesn't work out."

On why he gravitated to golf: "It's just really relaxing. It's fun. It's one of those sports you can play all day or play until you're 85 years old. It's frustrating and sometimes it doesn't sound fun, but I love it."

Pinellas Girls Golfer of the Year: Haydyn Gibson, Jr., Osceola

Best round: Shot a final-round 4-under 68 at Mission Inn Resort and Club in Howey-in-the-Hills to seal the Class 2A state championship. "I actually wasn't that nervous. I knew I had to go low and I was able to do it. And I did it with three bogeys."

Best finishes: Won state (73-68—141); won the Mustang Invitational (68); won districts (68); won regionals in a playoff (73).

Most memorable moment: Winning her first state championship. "It was amazing."

What's next: Gibson said in the new year she will try to qualify for the U.S. Open and the U.S. Amateur. She also wants to defend her state championship and pick a college.

Future goal: Gibson said she wouldn't mind being the next Brittany Lincicome, who is from Seminole and now on the LPGA Tour. "I hope I can follow in her footsteps."

On playing for friend and classmate Devin Chester, who died in a motocross accident days before the state tournament: "I dedicated everything to him. He was with me the whole way. I wore a hat that had 'DC' on one side and 191 on the other, which was his motocross number. I gave the hat to his dad at the funeral."

Hillsborough Boys Golfer of the Year: Tyler Bakich, Sr., Newsome

Best round: Shot 5-under 67 in the final round to win the Class 3A state championship at Deer Island Country Club in Tavares.

Best finishes: Won state (71-67—138); second at Vinoy Classic (69); won districts (68); tied for first at regionals (69).

Most memorable moment: Bakich will never forget his state championship. He injured his right ankle the night before and basically played two rounds on one leg, eventually winning by one shot. "I was basically swinging off my left foot both days. I couldn't rotate my right foot at all. It was painful, but I stuck through it."

What's next: Bakich will play golf at Florida State University

Future goal: Bakich said he's focused on going to FSU. "Hopefully, there's a national championship in our future."

On when he decided to focus on golf: "I played baseball until I was 12 years old and was pretty good at it. But I decided one summer to play golf and I was having fun with it. I kept playing it. I busted my butt and it's paid off."

Hillsborough Girls Golfer of the Year: Terese Romeo, Sr., Freedom

Best round: Romeo said it wasn't just one round. She shot 33 twice in nine-hole matches and ended the regular season with an under-par average.

Best finishes: Third at the Class 3A state tournament (71-74—145); won districts (76); won regionals (74).

Most memorable moment: Romeo said it was getting to the state tournament for the third time in her high school career. "I had a little fire in my stomach to get that state title. I never went into a tournament wanting to win as badly as this one."

What's next: Romeo will play golf at Mercer University in Macon, Ga.

Future goal: Romeo said she plans to improve her game at the college level and perhaps give professional golf a try.

On being 5-foot-1 and trying to keep up with bigger players: "I may be small on the outside but I'm not small on the inside. Sometimes I want to be big and tough, so I am."

North Suncoast Boys Golfer of the Year: Mike Spinger, Sr., Mitchell

Best round: He said it was his 1-under 71 at the Hammock Beach tournament in Palm Coast.

Best finishes: Won regionals (72); won Sunshine Athletic Conference (71); tied for third at Hammock Beach tournament; tied for third at CCC Invitational (72); tied for 32nd at Class 2A state tournament (80-80—160).

Most memorable moment: Spinger said it was playing the season's first 18-hole tournament at Hammock Beach. "I shot even on the Ocean Course the first day and it was really windy. The next day we played the Conservatory Course and I shot 1 under. That was the highlight of my year."

What's next: Spinger said he'll play in a New Year's tournament at Innisbrook. He also plans to play in junior tour events through the spring and summer.

Future goal: Spinger hopes to commit to a Division I school to play golf. He would one day like to make the Web.com Tour and qualify for the PGA Tour.

On playing on a talented team like Mitchell: "We challenge ourselves every day at practice. It makes us all better. It really helps to have teammates like that who can challenge you."

North Suncoast Girls Golfer of the Year: Kelly Harris, Jr., Sunlake

Best round: Shot 74 at Pebble Creek Country Club to win the Class 2A, District 15 championship.

Best finishes: Won the SAC tournament (75); won districts; finished second at the regionals (78); finished 32nd at the Class 2A state tournament (90-75—165).

Most memorable moment: Harris qualified for the state tournament for the second time. She said being able to go with her team this season made it even more special. "Going to states with my team was a great experience."

What's next: Harris said she plans to play in some junior tournaments this winter and spring in hopes to gain college exposure.

Future goal: Harris said her short-range goal is to play golf in college.

On how she was introduced to golf: "I used to go to the range (at Lutz Executive) with my dad when I was about 6. I didn't go to play golf. I went to collect lizards. Somehow the club ended up in my hands."


First team

Donnie Gabrelcik, Sr., Mitchell: Right there with Spinger as the Mustangs' top golfer. Shot 77-75—152 (tied for 15th) at state to lead the Mustangs.

Patrick Mills, Sr., Plant: Shot 68 to win the Vinoy Classic. Won the Class 3A-11 tournament with 69.

Greyson Porter, Jr., Shorecrest: Fourth at the Class A state tournament (70-77—147). Region tournament medalist after shooting 70.

Matthew Ruel, Jr., Jesuit: Shot consecutive 75s at the Class 2A state tournament (tied for 12th). Shot 74 to win the 2A-15 district tournament.

Michael Stewart, Sr., River Ridge: Shot 73 to place second at Class 2A-5 region tournament. Tied for fifth at Class 2A state tourney (70-75—145).

Second team

Robby Eisch, So., Plant

Ryan Hicks, So., Countryside

Mark Nauert, Jr., Newsome

Kyle Shealy, Sr., Canterbury

Anthony Swinford, Sr., Mitchell

Third team

Jake Arnett, Sr., Nature Coast

Tyler Dierwechter, Sr., East Lake

Andrew Heric, Sr., Clearwater CC

Chris Kern, So., Plant

Alec Murawski, Sr., Jesuit

Honorable mention

Boca Ciega: Cameron Fields; Calvary Christian: Josh Hancock; Clearwater Central Catholic: Martin Fennemore; East Lake: Jack Dickson, Evan Fratus, Tommy Hackett, Sean Murray; Freedom: Liam Doherty; Mitchell: Cody Miano, Nick Nuzzo; Indian Rocks Christian: Conner Campbell; Jesuit: Sean Lanoue, Kurt Sierra, Matthew Zloto; Newsome: Dhruv Patel, Kyle West, Justin Wendling; Osceola: Cameron Fady; Palm Harbor University: Chase Baum; Plant: Gunnar Raney, Jackson Suber, Aaron Tobin; Pinellas Park: Eric Costa; River Ridge: Mike Dodson; Robinson: Brett Johansen, Karam Paul, Andrew Skora; Saddlebrook: Alex Gibson, Joe He, Saomphavan Sayavong; Seminole: Anthony DeRosa, Jasen Norris, Jack Robertson; Shorecrest: Justin Jacobson, Karim Oliver, Kyle Murphy; Sickles: Darin DeLelys; Sunlake: Jake Roberts, Travis Wells; Tampa Catholic: Nilo Sanchez.

Coach of the year

Rick Hyatt, Mitchell: Hyatt coached one of the best teams in Tampa Bay. The Mustangs won district and region titles, finished sixth at state and played a challenging regular-season schedule.


First Team

Alison Armstrong, Jr., Cambridge Christian: Shot an opening-round 72 at the Class A state tournament and finished tied for 11th (72-81—153). Shot 76 at districts, 72 at regionals.

Kendall Johnson, Jr., Plant City: Shot 77 at the district tournament, 74 at regionals and finished seventh at the state tournament (77-74—151).

Alyssa Lamoureaux, Fr., Northside Christian: Shot 71 to finish second at Mustang Invitational. Shot 69 at regionals and two 77s at the Class A state tournament (tied for 14th).

Mariana Ocano, Jr., St. Petersburg: Shot 74 at the Mustang Invitational. Shot 74-79—153 (tied for eighth) at Class 3A state tournament.

Emma Paschal, Sr., Clearwater Central Catholic: Solid golfer all season. Signed to play at Long Island University.

Second team

Shyanne Dove, Jr., Mitchell

Kelsy Holbert, Sr., Steinbrenner

Sarah Noto, Jr., Cambridge Christian

Alyssa Serino, So., Steinbrenner

Ashley Zagers, So., Cambridge Christian

Third team

Claire Becker, Sr., Steinbrenner

Mackenzie Bennett, Jr., Mitchell

Taylor Dedmen, Fr., Seminole

Estefania Guizar, So., Land O'Lakes

Madison Heideman, Fr., Osceola

Honorable mention

Academy of the Holy Names: Georgia Ruffolo; Bloomingdale: Elizabeth Jackson; Durant: Tori Higgins; Fivay: Brooke Dalton; Hernando: Maddy Pickersgill; Indian Rocks Christian: Bianca Sol Cruz; Mitchell: Lindsey Ritchey; Newsome: Meghna Patel; Northside Christian: Ryanne Jackson; Osceola: Sophie Smoot, Plant City: Kaylee McIntosh; Robinson: Anna Gilhool, Caroline Gilhool; Tampa Prep: Lilly Berry; Tampa Catholic: Lindsey Gonzalez.

Coach of the year

Jim Hill, Osceola: The Warriors had the Class 2A state champion (Gibson), but it takes more than one golfer to finish fourth at the state tournament. Hill guided one of the area's deepest squads, which included Heideman, Smoot, Claire Vermette and Lauren Morris.