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Albany golfer Smith wins car at Lopez event

Local amateur golfer Sissy Smith smiles as she stands next to the new car she won by sinking a hole-in-one on No. 2 at Doublegate last week during the Nancy Lopez Hospice Golf Classic. (mike.phillips@albanyherald.com)

Local amateur golfer Sissy Smith smiles as she stands next to the new car she won by sinking a hole-in-one on No. 2 at Doublegate last week during the Nancy Lopez Hospice Golf Classic. (mike.phillips@albanyherald.com)

ALBANY — She said her “mind popped,’’ and she meant it.

That’s the way Sissy Smith felt when she dropped in a hole-in-one at the Nancy Lopez Hospice Golf Classic at the Doublegate County Club, where she won a 2012 Toyota Prius, which was awarded to her Thursday at Toyota of Albany.

The Prius was part of the hole-in-one promotion, and it was a one-of-a-kind moment.

No one has ever had a hole-in-one during the 26 years of the classic, but Smith wasn’t even thinking about winning a car when she teed off on No. 2.

“I never looked at the car,’’ she said. “I was just thinking, ‘Swing easy,’ and then when I hit the ball I never saw it go in.’’

Smith said she didn’t realize she had a hole-in-one.

“The (official) at the hole said, ‘I think you have a hole-in-one,’ ” Smith said.

Then when she walked up to the hole the sky opened up.

“I looked in the hole and my ball had a glint on it,’’ Smith said. “The sunlight was hitting it just right.’’

Well, Smith had hit the ball just right.

“Then there was a lot of jumping up and down and a lot of screaming,’’ said Smith’s husband, Chris, who plays golf with his wife at River Pointe Golf Club, where they are members, and also at Doublegate, where they were members years ago before moving to a home near River Pointe.

Sissy Smith has been playing golf for 20 years and regularly for about the last 10 at River Pointe, where she has won the women’s club championship. This was her second hole-in-one, but she should have felt comfortable hitting at the No. 2 hole at Doublegate. That’s where she began playing golf 20 years ago — at the exact hole.

“She didn’t want to hit off the tee at the first hole, because there were men standing around there,’’ said Chris Smith. “So she started at the second hole — and she hit her drive to within two inches of the hole.’’

That’s the way Smith started her golf career, and Thursday Mike Neves the GM of Toyota of Albany, handed her the keys to a new Prius.

“She can use the car,’’ Chris Smith said. “She’s got a 12-year-old BMW with about 200,000 miles on it. She didn’t want to get another car because she has a dog who goes everywhere with her. His name is Trouble, and he’s black. He’s a mix. So now she has a new black car for her black dog.’’

The car’s listed value was $26,804 on the showroom floor.

“When I realized it was a hole-in-one my mind just popped,’’ she said. “You just go into this place where it feels like you are in a dream. That’s the way I felt, like I was in a dream.’’