LINCOLN, Neb. – The Dakota Wesleyan University women’s golf team’s season came to an end Thursday afternoon in the third and final round of the NAIA Women’s Golf National Championships.
The Tigers shot their best round of the tournament Thursday at Wilderness Ridge, but it wasn’t enough to lift them into the top 17. Dakota Wesleyan carded a 324 in the third round – 13 strokes better than its second-round score – to finish with a three-round total of 993. That score put them in 19th place, just four strokes out of 17th place, which is held by St. Andrews University, which has a three-round total of 989. The top 17 teams made the cut to Friday’s fourth and final round of the tournament.
SCAD Savannah and Oklahoma City University are tied for first in the team race heading into Friday’s final round. SCAD shot a 306 Thursday and Oklahoma City carded a 303, and both have scores of 914 after three rounds. University of the Cumberlands is third with a 924, Bellevue University is fourth with a 927 and William Woods rounds out the top five with a 935.
Individually, sophomore Lauren Fitts shot her best round of the tournament Thursday to finish as the Tigers’ top individual golfer. She shot a 78 in the third round to bring her three-day total to 245, good for a tie for 60th. She shot an 86 Tuesday, an 81 Wednesday and finished with a 78. Senior Chelsea Burback wrapped up her college golf career in a tie for 62nd at her fourth and final national tournament. She shot an 86 Thursday to finish with a 246. Burback shot a 79, 81 and 86.
Junior Jenna Winckler jumped from 106th to a tie for 81st after three rounds. She shot a 78 Thursday to finished with a 251. Winckler shot an 84, an 89 and a 78. Freshman April Barnett also improved a few places after the third round, making the jump from a tie for 88th to finish in a tie for 84th in her first-ever national tournament appearance. Barnett shot an 82 Thursday and carded a three-round total of 252. She also shot an 83 and an 87. Junior Tiera Feller rounded out DWU’s five golfers and finished in a tie for 105th with a 260. She shot an 86 Tuesday, 88 Wednesday and an 86 in DWU’s third and final round.
Oklahoma City’s Elia Folch and SCAD’s Alazne Urizar are tied for first in the individual race with 220s. Both shot 73s Thursday. Northwood University (Texas) golfer Daniela Martinez, who led after two rounds, is third with a 223, SCAD’s Sofia Molinaro is fourth with a 224 and Northwood (Florida) golfer Bri LaFoca and Bellevue’s Renee Santoyo are tied for fifth with 226s.
The 2014 national tournament wraps up Friday, May 23, at Wilderness Ridge in Lincoln. The Tigers return four of their five golfers who played in the national tournament in the 2014-15 season, including Fitts, who won her second straight Great Plains Athletic Conference Women’s Golfer-of-the-Year title as a sophomore this season.
Courtesy: DWU Leah Rado