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SMC Golf: Belles place third at MIAAs

Jared Jedick | Monday, October 8, 2007

Saint Mary’s came in third place this weekend at the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Championships, firing a team score of 697 in two rounds at Bedford Valley Country Club in Battle Creek, Mich.

Olivet won the tournament and took first in the conference with a team score of 665. Olivet’s Lindsey Limpkin also won the overall individual title with a score of 163.

The third-place finish this weekend pushed the Belles out of second place in the final MIAA conference tallies. They finished the conference season with a final score of 1,726 strokes.

Tri-State University, which finished second in the Championships with a score of 677, edged Saint Mary’s for second place with a final season tally of 1,711 strokes.

Losing second place to Tri-State may have cost the Belles the chance to host a MIAA qualifying tournament in the spring.

Senior Katie O’Brien posted the best score of the weekend for Saint Mary’s. She finished with an 85 on Friday and an 83 on Saturday for a total of 168 strokes, good enough for third place in the tournament.

O’Brien’s strong showing in the Championships cemented her position as a season medalist in the MIAA conference, with a final scoring average of 80.25. She narrowly edged Hope College’s Julie Hoogerhyde for the honor, who finished with an 80.5 average.

O’Brien is following in a strong tradition of Saint Mary’s medalists, earning the honor for the Belles for the fourth time in five years.

Backing up O’Brien on the weekend was freshman Emily Gore with a two-day total of 175, earning her second-team MIAA honors.

Freshman Rosie O’Connor and junior Perri Hamma both tallied a 177, and freshman Michelle Hird finished with a 182.

Playing in the individual category, junior Meredith Fantom tallied a 176 and freshman Amanda Mainstone scored a 184.

The team is looking forward to a second chance at the MIAA field in the spring. Saint Mary’s only trailed first-place Olivet by 14 strokes after two tournaments, but Olivet was able to pull away considerably in the final two meetings of the year.

The squad needs to remain consistent to challenge Olivet this spring.

The Belles ranked No. 1 in the country in the Division III freshman power rankings, forming a young, strong team nucleus that will likely prove even stronger in the spring.

No members of the team were available for comment following the tournament.