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SMC Golf: Belles finish third in season opener

Mary Green | Tuesday, September 3, 2013

In Kim Moore’s first tournament as head coach, Saint Mary’s took third place out of eight teams at the Olivet Labor Day Tee-Off, held Saturday and Sunday at Medalist Golf Club in Marshall, Mich.

The Belles shot a two-day team score of 672 – 338 on Saturday and 334 on Sunday – to finish behind winner Washington University and runner-up Olivet, which shot 628 and 634, respectively.

Moore said her team impressed her at the tournament by finishing in the top half of the standings, but it still has room to grow and improve.

“I was pleasantly happy with the way things turned out,” she said. “We did better as a team the second round, so that’s always a positive, so I thought we did well. I know we could have played a little bit better, but for the majority of how it went, it went well.”

Senior Paige Pollak led Saint Mary’s with a career-low, second-round score of 75, six strokes lower than her Saturday score of 81. Pollak swung her way to fifth place individually and earned a spot on the all-tournament team.

Moore also said the performance of freshman Ali Mahoney made an impression. In her first collegiate tournament, Mahoney shot an opening-round 81 to finish Saturday in 11th place, and eventually finished 21st overall out of 55 golfers after shooting a 90 on Sunday.

“She played pretty well for her first event as a college golfer,” Moore said. “She started off really well in her first round with an 81, which really put her up towards the top. She didn’t finish as well as she would have liked, but I think she started out well. … [She and Paige] really stood out for me on my team.”

With one tournament and a top-three finish under their belts, Moore said she would like to see the Belles continue to show the focus they did over the weekend in Michigan.

“I’d like for them to continue their patience, taking it hole-by-hole, shot-by-shot,” she said. “That’s something that they’ll have to work on and learn, and the more experience they get, the better. [I want them] to continue to be confident with their swings and in their game and practice hard this week. We have a nice little break before our next event, so we’ll try to take what we’ve done in practice and put that on the course.”

The Belles will next hit the links Sept. 15 and 16 for the O’Brien National Invitational at the Warren Golf Course.

Contact Mary Green at mgreen8@nd.edu