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SMC Golf: Three freshmen crack line up in Michigan

Mike Gotimer | Monday, September 1, 2008

This past weekend, the Saint Mary’s golf team competed in its first competition of the year at the Ferris State Bulldog Invitational at the Katke Golf Course in Big Rapids, Mich.

The Belles were one of 16 Division II and III teams entered in the tournament, finishing third amongst the Division III schools that competed in the invitational. The team finished with a combined score of 671 after two days of competition.

Entering their first tournament of the year, the team had a number of questions to answer. Because of injury concerns, the team was forced to start three freshmen that had yet to play at Katke. Despite their inexperience, coach Mark Hamilton was pleased with the outcome.

“Considering that we played three freshmen in the starting line-up that had never seen the course, I was pleased with the outcome,” Hamilton said. “We still have some work to do, but we’re on the right track. Our goal was of being the low D-III in the field was not accomplished, but the two teams ahead of us played very well.”

The Belles were led by freshman Natalie Matuszak, who was competing in her first collegiate event. Matuszak shot a 78 on Saturday and an 80 on Sunday on the par-72 course to finish as the low Division III player in the field. Her overall score of 158 resulted in a tie for 21st place among the rest of the field.

Other highlights included a second day 83 from freshman Christine Brown out of the No. 4 spot. Brown’s 83 was matched by that of fellow freshman Kailey Jacob on the first day. Senior Perri Hamma contributed on the first day as well with an 84. Sophomore Emily Gore also contributed with a solid 92 on Saturday.

With one tournament under their belt, the Belles look forward to Thursday’s home match up with defending MIAA conference champion Olivet College.

“We are looking forward to our first conference match this Thursday,” Hamilton said, “The ladies are anxious to show the country what they can do when healthy and firing on all cylinders.”