DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The Northeastern State women’s golf team is sixth after Wednesday’s opening round of the 2013 NCAA Division II Championships on the par-72, 6,228-yard Legends Course at LPGA International.
The RiverHawks opened with a 30-over-par 318, and the team is one of 11 looking up at No. 1 Nova Southeastern. The four-time-defending national champions sit in first place at 4-over 292. The Sharks are the only team in the field who has ever won the title.
No. 2 Lynn is second at 13-over 301, and No. 6 Barry is a stroke behind. No. 4 St. Edward’s and No. 8 Grand Canyon round out the top five at 304 and 309, respectively.
Kelsey Kirkpatrick became the talk of the tournament after she recorded a hole-in-one on the 162-yard par-3 15th. The senior hit a four-iron to the left of the hole, and the ball found the bottom of the cup after careening off a green-side mound.
“I never even saw it go in. We walked up to the green and I couldn’t find my ball,” Kirkpatrick said. “I knew I hit it pin high, but I couldn’t believe it when one of my playing partners told me she found it in the hole.”
The hole-in-one was the first of her career in a collegiate tournament.
Kirkpatrick opened with a 6-over 78 to tie for 32nd. Fellow senior Whitney McAteer birdied two par 3’s en route to a team-leading 75. She sits in a tie for 12th.
Sophomore Alex Koch is tied for 43rd at 9-over 81, and freshman McCandren Lewis is tied for 54th with a 12-over 84. Freshman Kayla Schroeder finished in a tie for 70th at 22-over 94.
Daniela Ortiz of Nova Southeastern leads the tournament by four strokes at 5-under 67.
The RiverHawks will begin their second round at 8:20 a.m. Thursday on the back nine.
Taylor Neidy recovered from a slow start to shoot a 76 and pace Central Oklahoma on the first day of the NCAA Division II Women’s Golf Championships here Wednesday.
Neidy was the only one of UCO’s five players to break 80 on the rugged 6,228-yard, par-72 Arthur Hills Legends Course at LPGA International, with the Bronchos recording 12 double bogeys and a triple bogey en route to an opening-round 326.
That has UCO ninth in the 12-team tourney heading into the second of four rounds Thursday.
“We got off to a bad start and pretty much struggled all day,” head coach Michael Bond said. “You’ve got to really manage your game on this course or you can make some big numbers and that’s what happened to us, though Taylor did a great job coming back after a tough start.”
Neidy’s 76 has her tied for 16th in the individual standings. The Bronchos also got 82s from Tressa Brumley and Aly Seng, while Erica Bensch shot 85 and Katie Bensch 87.
UCO’s players started on the back nine and Neidy bogeyed the first four holes before steadying herself and playing the final 14 holes even par. The junior standout made the turn at 5-over 41 before coming back with a 1-under 35.
2013 NCAA DIVISION II WOMEN’S GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS – First Round Results
May 15, 2013 at Daytona Beach, Fla.
(par-72, 6,228-yard Legends Course at LPGA International)
1. #1 Nova Southeastern 292 (+4)
2. #2 Lynn 301 (+13)
3. #6 Barry 302 (+14)
4. #4 St. Edward’s 304 (+16)
5. #8 Grand Canyon 309 (+21)
6. #27 Northeastern State 318 (+30)
7. #5 Tarleton State 320 (+32)
8. #21 Indianapolis 321 (+33)
9. #17 Central Oklahoma 326 (+38)
10. #22 California (Pa.) 327 (+39)
11. #25 Augustana 328 (+40)
12. #36 Ashland 344 (+56)
1. Daniela Ortiz (Nova Southeastern) 67 (-5)
2. Nancy Vergara (Barry) 71 (-1)
3. Teresa Hernani (Lander) 72 (E)
T4. Ryanne Haddow (St. Edward’s) 73 (+1)
Linnea Johansson (Nova Southeastern) 73 (+1)
Kristen Sammarco (Armstrong Atlantic) 73 (+1)
T12. Whitney McAteer 75 (+3)
T32. Kelsey Kirkpatrick 78 (+6)
T43. Alex Koch 81 (+9)
T54. McCandren Lewis 84 (+12)
T70. Kayla Schroeder 94 (+22)