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SMC Golf: Belles learn from loss

A.J. Godeaux | Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Though Saint Mary’s finished last out of the six teams at the competitive George Fox Invitational, held Friday and Saturday at Westlake Village Golf Course in Peoria, Ariz., the Belles still gained much-needed momentum moving forward.

The Belles started the match on a cold note, with only three of the six golfers breaking 90 – juniors Paige Pollak (83) and Alexi Brown (86) and freshman Anna-Marie Gainey (87) – which left the team a deep hole to dig out of on day two of the tournament. Freshman Claire Boyle, who shot 90, attributed the team’s subpar performance to rust.

“That was only our second time playing 18 holes since our last match in October,” Boyle said. “That definitely made the first day more challenging.”

Saint Mary’s rebounded on day two though, cutting 24 strokes off its day-one total. Pollak led the way with a 77, and sophomore Janice Heffernan improved her day one score by 11 strokes, shooting a 79. Brown and Gainey both shot 83.

“After the first day of the tournament we knew what to expect and could get back into our competitive tournament mode,” Boyle said.

Despite the much stronger showing on the second day, the Belles still finished 11 strokes behind fifth place Gustavus Adolphus and 52 strokes behind the host and winner, No. 6 George Fox.

That result does not tell the whole story though, as the Belles’ second-day score of 322 tied for third that day, which Boyle was particularly proud of.

“We were able to rebound from that first day, come together as a team, and accomplish our goal for the weekend,” she said.

Now that the team has found its competitive edge, it will hope to bring that momentum to their next match, the Washington University-St. Louis Spring Invite, held April 6 and 7 at Gateway National Golf Links.

Contact A.J. Godeaux at agodeaux@nd.edu