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ND Women’s Golf: Team hits sunflower state

Chris Hine | Monday, October 2, 2006

Coming off a disappointing second-place finish in last week’s Notre Dame Invitational, the Irish will travel to Lawrence, Kan. to compete in the Marilynn Smith Sunflower Invitational today and Tuesday.

Notre Dame will be without junior Alejandra Diaz-Calderon and freshman Julie Kim, who are out with injuries.

“It’s kind of a week by week thing for both of them,” Irish coach Susan Holt said. “Realistically, though, I expect them to be out for the remainder of the fall season.”

Fifteen other teams will take part in the invitational Alvamar Golf Club. Holt said she emphasized working Notre Dame’s short game over the past week of practices in order to trim down the squad’s scores to under 300 per round.

“This course has a lot of hills for being in the middle of Kansas,” Holt said. “We worked on a lot of up and down, ledge, bump and run shots, and we worked a lot on putting, which will help at a course like this.”

In the No. 1 slot for the Irish will be senior Noriko Nakazaki, who tied for eighth at last week’s tournament. Nakazaki is Notre Dame’s all-time leader in scoring average and is averaging 75 per round this year.

Sophomore Lisa Maunu, who has started the year with two top-20 individual finishes, will be in the second slot.

Freshman Kristin Wetzel will be in the third slot. Wetzel posted an even-par 72 last week and is averaging 78.50 per round through the first two tournaments of her collegiate career.

Junior Jane Lee will compete in her first event as a member of the team this year

Lee competed in last week’s Notre Dame Invitational, but as an individual entrant. Her scores did not count toward the team total.

Freshman Annie Brophy will occupy the fifth team spot Monday and Tuesday, while senior Stacy Brown will play as an individual entrant. Brophy is third on the team with an average of 77.33 in six rounds of play this year, while Brown has a career mark of 78.85.

Throughout the first two tournaments, the Irish have yet to break 300 in a round of play, a goal which they hope to attain this week. Holt said she is confident that the Irish can prevail in a competitive field of 15 other teams from the Midwest region of the country.

The first two rounds of the tournament will take place Monday with the third round coming on Tuesday.