LAMPASAS — Morgan Rogers made it official Thursday, but there was never any doubt.
After creating a legacy at Lampasas, the senior golfer began the transition into her collegiate career by signing a national letter of intent to play for Angelo State.
The early-morning ceremony at Lampasas High School was merely a formality, though. Rogers knew the second she received an offer last month from Rambelles head coach Chandra Alexander that Angelo State was where she belonged.
“It was one of those things where you get that tingling feeling in your stomach, and a weight just lifts off your shoulders,” Rogers said. “You just can’t help but be excited.”
In addition to the location and small-town atmosphere of San Angelo, a major reason Rogers was eager to attend Angelo State revolved around Alexander, who inherited the program in June. Upon meeting with the coach, who played professionally and earned all-conference honors while at North Texas, and getting an understanding of her philosophy, it quickly became evident Angelo State was a perfect fit.
“I wanted somewhere that had an amazing coach,” Rogers said, “not just some coach who gets paid to do their job. I wanted a coach who actually wants to make you better. A coach who actually wanted to make the program better.”
Since joining the Lady Badgers golf team as a freshman, Rogers has made it to the Class 3A state tournament every year. In 2011 and 2012, Lampasas reached state as a team, finishing second and third overall, respectively. Last season, Rogers was the lone Lady Badger to emerge from the regional tournament and finished seventh as an individual at state.
With her academic and athletic future secure, Rogers is now focused on completing her high school career with one final trip to Austin, and she intends to bring her teammates with her.
“Making it to the state tournament is probably one of the best things you can ever do or ever accomplish,” she said. “(The other players) want that taste of the state tournament. They want to be at state. They’ve been to regionals, and they’ve seen it end at regionals, and I don’t want them to see it end at regionals this year. I want them to have that state experience, and I want to be the one that helps them get there.”
Rogers shot an 84 at the Harker Heights High School Veterans Day Invitational on Tuesday, helping guide Lampasas to a second-place finish at Killeen’s Stonetree Golf Course. The 18-team field consisted primarily of Class 4A and Class 5A teams and served as the conclusion of the fall portion of the Lady Badgers’ schedule.
Next up for Lampasas will be the state preview tournament at Cedar Creek’s Wolfdancer Golf Club — the site of the 2014 Class 3A state tournament — in early February.
While Rogers knows there is a lot of work to be do in the months ahead, she feels making her commitment to Angelo State official will only benefit her game.
“I’m not playing for a team and a scholarship,” she said.
“Now, I’m focusing on my team and doing what I know I need to do for my team and what I need to do for myself. … My focus is on one thing.”
Contact Clay Whittington at email@example.com