LIBERTY CITY — Macy Rutland started playing golf when she was four, and her love for the game has continued to grow through her early teen years and throughout a successful high school career.

On Friday, Rutland locked up at least four mores years of playing the game — along with her education — by signing a national letter-of-intent with Northeastern State University during a ceremony at the Sabine High School library.

“I just want to improve my game and compete, and I think going to a Division II school will give me the best chance to do that,” said Rutland, a three-time regional qualifier who has reached the University Interscholastic League State Golf Tournament once.

Rutland has already opened her final spring season at Sabine on a strong note, firing a career-low round of 75 recently at the Spring Hill Lady Panther Invitational in Longview to finish third overall.

In 2017 as a freshman, Rutland finished in the top 10 at the district to qualify for the regional tournament.

The following season as a sophomore, she placed third in the district, third at regionals and turned in a Top 20 finish at the UIL State Tournament.

A year ago, she placed fifth individually at the Lindale, Sabine and Spring Hill tournaments, was second in the district and finished eighth at the regional tournament.

She has a career scoring average of 83.

Northeastern State University, located in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, competes in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association Conference along with Central Missouri, Central Oklahoma, Emporia State, Fort Hays State, Lincoln, Missouri Southern, Missouri Western, Nebraska-Kearney, Northwest Missouri State, Pittsburg State, Washburn, Newman and Rogers State.

Last spring, Northeastern State won the MIAA conference championship, finished third at the NCAA Division II Central Regionals and placed 13th at the NCAA Championships in Palm Beach, Florida.

Follow Jack Stallard on Twitter: @lnjsports