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ALTON  Rain streamed from the visor on her hat, but Gracie Piar couldn't see it.

The Alton Marquette sophomore didn't notice that her jacket had been soaked for hours as well.

Nothing broke her concentration because she had long grown accustomed to the wet weather.

"I play a lot of golf in any conditions, so I'm used to rain," Piar said.

Trudging through an on-and-off downpour at Spencer T. Olin Golf Course, Piar grabbed medalist honors in the Class 1A Alton Marquette Regional on Thursday with a 4-over 76.

That gold medal performance helped lead the Explorers to the team title with a four-player score of 345 - well ahead of second-place Columbia (361).

"It's awesome to get that regional plaque," Alton Marquette coach Deb Walsh said. "I'm just so proud of them for hanging in today. It was just a tough day with the rain and the wind."

Alton Marquette grabbed its second successive regional crown. Waterloo (430) placed third. The top three teams, as well as the top 10 individuals not associated with a qualifying team, advanced to Mt. Carmel Sectional on Monday at West Berwick Golf Course.

The Explorers have advanced to the sectional round as a team for the eighth consecutive season.

Piar, the Explorers' first individual medalist since Elaina Smith in 2013, never let the conditions faze her. While the weather didn't mess with her concentration, she did admit that the par 5 holes did cause her some troubles.

"My par 5's today, I was 2-over today and I'm usually even or under every time," Piar said. "I just couldn't make any putts today."

While one of her low lights came on hole No. 17, a highlight came on that same hole too. After watching her ball splash down in the water, she was able to wedge the shot close to the hole to help her sink the putt to maintain par.

Joining her as the only other player to break 80 was sophomore teammate Audrey Cain, who finished second overall with a 5-over 77. 

"We're best friends so we have competitions all the time, so it's awesome," Piar said.

Cain also excelled under some nightmarish conditions.

"I've played in conditions like this before, so it wasn't horrible," Cain said. "It was up and down, but I stayed confident throughout and I thought I did pretty well."

Walsh knew that she'd get two low scores from her sensational sophomores, but the rest of the team also came through during crunch time.

"Each time I came up to them and talked to them, I told them that we're just looking for bogey or par today because that's going to be helpful," Walsh said. "All day, they stuck in there."

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