OC women put on show in Heartland Conference tourney

HORSESHOE BAY, Texas (April 21, 2015) – They didn’t leave the Heartland Conference Championship with a banner, but the Oklahoma Christian Lady Eagles put on a title-worthy show on Tuesday on the tournament’s final day at Slick Rock Golf Course.

OC placed three individuals – Audrey Meisch, India Matthews and Anna Arrese Cortadellas – in the top 10 in one of NCAA Division II’s deepest conference tournaments and set an unofficial program single-round scoring record with a 289. It would have been enough for a conference title, but for this – the Lady Eagles’ team score didn’t count.

Because of a conference decision before the season, the three Heartland schools still in the Division II membership process – OC, Rogers State and Lubbock Christian (Texas) – weren’t allowed to compete for the Heartland team title in 2015 and their team scores weren’t kept. If they had been, OC’s unofficial two-day score of 589 would have been one shot better than the official conference champion, Dallas Baptist (Texas).

Even with that disappointment, there was plenty to celebrate for the Lady Eagles, most notably the success of Meisch and Matthews. The OC duo tied for third at even-par 144, with Meisch, a junior from Wichita, Kan., shooting a 2-under-par 70 on the 5,896-yard course – shooting six birdies along the way.

Matthews, a sophomore from Merrimac, Australia, zoomed up 11 spots in the 50-woman field with a sizzling 68 – the best round by any woman in the field in the tournament. She closed with four birdies in her last five holes and joined Meisch on the six-woman all-tournament team.

Arrese Cortadellas capped her brilliant career with an eighth-place finish, ending her remarkable streak of six straight top-two finishes. The senior from Barcelona, Spain, shot her second straight 74 to close at 148.

OC’s other senior, Catherine Odgers, tied for 20th at 155 after shooting a 79 and sophomore Allison Sell fired a 77 to end up tied for 26th at 157.

In the team race, after Dallas Baptist – which entered the tournament at No. 7 in the Golfstat.com Division II rankings – came No. 9-ranked St. Edward’s (Texas) at 591 and No. 13-ranked Newman (Kan.) at 603. Johany Rivera of St. Edward’s was the individual champion at 4-under 140 for the tournament, three shots better than Erin Barrington of Dallas Baptist.

* Oklahoma Christian 300-289 – 589
Dallas Baptist 297-293 – 590
St. Edward’s 294-297 – 591
Newman 304-299 – 603
St. Mary’s 305-306 – 611
* Rogers State 302-314 – 616
Arkansas-Fort Smith 312-312 – 624
* Lubbock Christian 339-320 – 659
Texas A&M International 334-338 – 672
Oklahoma Panhandle State 403-386 – 789

* — Team scores not counted

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Ken MacLeod

Ken MacLeod

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