Sooners in eighth in NCAA field

The University of Oklahoma women’s golf team shot a first-round 291 (+3) Tuesday at the NCAA Championships, good for eighth place out of 24 teams in Athens, Ga.
 
The Sooners, who are making their second straight NCAA Championships appearance and seventh overall, trail co-leaders San Jose State and Southern California (-4) by seven shots. Duke (-2) is in third place, Alabama (E) in fourth, Purdue and UCLA (+1) in fifth and Stanford (+2) in seventh.
 
A pair of Sooners are tied for sixth place out of 126 golfers at the University of Georgia Golf Course. Junior Emily Collins and senior Taylor Schmidt each shot a 1-under 71 and are four shots behind leader Regan De Guzman of San Jose State.
 
Collins, who finished a career-best second-place tie at the NCAA Central Regional two weeks ago, recorded four birdies on Tuesday, all within a six-hole span on the back nine. Schmidt, playing in the team’s No. 5 spot, carded two birdies and one bogey en route to her third-best round of the season.
 
"I think a lot of us put things into perspective because of the tragedy back home," said Collins, referring to tornadoes that devastated central Oklahoma the previous two days. "At least for me that’s fueled the way I played. I didn’t get as upset if I made a bogey or missed a birdie putt. I think everyone is pedal to the metal, and we’re playing for the people back home."
 
Said Schmidt, "I thought I played really well today. I tried to keep it really simple and hit fairways and greens. I was able to hit putts when I needed to, especially the par saves. I think that’s really big on this golf course."
 
Junior Kaitlyn Rohrback shot a 2-over 74 out of OU’s No. 4 position and is tied for 46th place. She recorded 16 pars and two bogeys on the day.
 
OU’s top two golfers this season are tied for 64th place. Juniors Chirapat Jao-Javanil and Anne-Catherine Tanguay, who rank No. 1 and 2 in school history in career scoring average, respectively, each shot a 3-over 75. Both were at 3 over par after nine holes before shooting even par on the back side. Jao-Javanil is the defending NCAA individual champion, winning last year’s title in Franklin, Tenn., by four strokes.
 
"We played solid today, especially on the back nine," said head coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell, who formerly served as an assistant coach at Georgia. "I’m proud of Taylor and Emily; they played well today. We are teeing off the back tomorrow and can’t wait to get out there."
 
Three rounds remain in the 72-hole tournament. OU is back in action Wednesday morning starting at 8:25 ET. The Sooners will be paired with Purdue and Tulane for the second straight day and will tee off on hole No. 10. Live scoring is available at NCAA.com. 

Oklahoma State’s women’s golf team posted an opening round of 303 on Tuesday at the NCAA Championship to stand in 22nd place.

at the University of Georgia Golf Course.
 
Julie Yang was OSU’s top performer with a 74, which tied her for 46th place. The freshman is looking to extend her string of top-10 finishes to four in a row.
 
Junior Jayde Panos posted a 75 to finish the day tied for 64th place, while senior Kelsey Vines was a stroke back with a 76 and tied for 76th.
 
Juniors Josephine Janson and Lauren Falley each posted a 78 and came in tied for 103rd place.
 
The Cowgirls will begin their second round Wednesday at 8:28 a.m. (EST). They will be grouped with Florida and South Carolina.

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Ken MacLeod

Publisher Golf Oklahoma | Oklahoma's No. 1 Golf Source

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