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SMC Golf: Latecomer has impact on Belles

Meaghan Veselik | Thursday, September 10, 2009

If you looked at the Belles’ statistics from last fall in comparison with the stats from this season, you’d notice not only new freshmen on the roster, but a new upperclassman as well.

Junior Mary Kate Boyce started on the team in the second semester of her sophomore year, and has since been showing not only the Belles, but also the MIAA the talent they had been missing out on. Since joining the Saint Mary’s team, Boyce has been tearing up the course with her leading scores in both conference and national competition, last spring as well as so far this fall.

In her first competition with the Belles at the Southwestern Invitational in Georgetown, Texas, Boyce came out strong with an 86 to tie for 11th place with two other golfers. In the second day of competition, she led the Belles to second in the competition, shooting the lowest round of the day for all golfers in the event with a 77. She finished second overall with a combined score of 163.

Boyce’s domination on the course only continued as she finished in a tie for second with an 80 at the MIAA’s first qualifier for the NCAA tournament. Along with teammate Emily Gore, Boyce helped to lead Saint Mary’s to come out on top over then-No.11 Olivet.

Boyce continued her strong season throughout the spring, placing in the top five for the Belles and in the top ten of every competition. In the second round of the NCAA qualifier, she shared medalist honors with a score of 80 for the day, and led the Belles to another first place finish. In the third round, Boyce shot an 85, tying her for ninth for the day behind three of her Saint Mary’s teammates, and winning the Belles the spot at the NCAA Division III Championships.

In the first of the four days of NCAA competition in Port Saint Lucie, Fla., Saint Mary’s was tied for fifth place of the 21 teams after entering the competition at No. 17. Boyce personally shot a 79, tying her for 19th at the start. The second day of competition saw the Belles move into a tie for 12th, and Boyce sharing the 39th place spot with teammate Natalie Matuszak after she shot an 86. In the third day, Boyce moved into a tie for 40th as she shot an 83 and Saint Mary’s moved into 10th. She shot an 87 on the last day of competition to help the Belles hold onto 10th overall, and give her a 335 for the four rounds and her first national competition.

Boyce’s domination on the green carried over from the spring to this fall’s competition. In Saint Mary’s first day of MIAA competition this season, Boyce shot a 79, putting her in seventh place after the first day of competition in the Trine University Fall Invitational. In the second day, Boyce shot an 81 for the round, bringing her to a 160 for the weekend and overall ninth place, second for the Belles behind freshman Martyna Mierzwa.

Boyce and the Belles will play in the O’Brien Division III Championship at the Warren Golf Course at Notre Dame this Sunday and Monday, where she’ll look once again to show her strength on the course.