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SMC Golf: Pollak, Heffernan lead chase of Olivet

A. J. Godeaux | Friday, April 26, 2013

Saint Mary’s needs to close the gap with Olivet this weekend after finishing the opening round of the MIAA NCAA qualifier in second place Wednesday, 23 strokes behind opening day leader Olivet.

The Belles are looking for a strong performance out of junior Paige Pollak, who has sole possession of fourth place after shooting an 84 in the first round. 

Sophomore Janice Heffernan, who was second on the team in scoring average before the tournament began, will look to improve on her first-round score of 95, easily her roughest outing of the year.

No matter how well Pollak or Heffernan plays, the Belles will likely need some help from Olivet. Their trio of season all-MIAA team members finished 1-2-3 in the first qualifier, headlined by medalist Adrienne Plourde’s four-over-par 76. 

Despite the Comets’ dominating performance, Belles coach Jason Kolean said the Belles aren’t worried about how well the Comets are playing. Instead, Saint Mary’s plans to focus solely on “improving on our past performances,” she said.

“The girls have really pushed themselves this week,” Kolean said. “We have continued to work on each aspect of the game.”

Hope and Calvin round out the rest of the field, trailing Olivet by 31 and 40 strokes, respectively.

The second and third MIAA NCAA qualifying rounds will be hosted by Olivet on Friday and Saturday at the Medalist Golf Club in Marshall, Mich. The team with the lowest average score from the three qualifiers will earn the automatic NCAA berth.

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