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ND women’s golf starts season 3-0 for first time in history

Joe Meixell | Monday, October 1, 2007

The putts keep on sinking, and Notre Dame just keeps on winning. And for the first time in Notre Dame’s history, the Irish are three-for-three to start a season.

After consecutive victories in the Cougar Classic and Napa River Grill Cardinal Cup, the Irish overcame a two-stroke deficit to take the Wolverine Invitational Sunday.

Irish coach Susan Holt was happy to pick up the win but thinks her team should have played even better.

“If you look at the field, our competition wasn’t as strong as it has been in the past,” Holt said. “Our play was a bit sloppy at times, but in the end we were able to play good enough to win, and that’s what matters.”

At times during the season, Notre Dame has been too aggressive, eventually hurting itself. But the Irish have been able to play consistently enough to pull out three victories to start the season.

“We still need to work on some of our issues,” Holt said. “Our course management is still a problem that we need to take care of. We’re going to take these two and a half weeks that we have before our next tournament and try to overcome these problems.”

After two rounds, host Michigan clung to the lead with Notre Dame breathing down its neck. The final round saw the Wolverines shoot a collective round of plus-39, dropping them to fourth place. The Irish shot a 304 on the day to pick up 19 strokes on Michigan and hold off second-place Wisconsin.

The Irish shot a 52-over-par 904 (303-297-305) for the two-day tournament besting the Badgers, who shot a 908 (310-297-301).

Indiana finished third with a 916 (306-302-308), beating out Michigan by five strokes. Rounding out the top-five was Eastern Michigan, with a 924 (305-307-312).

Holt, despite being a little upset with the sloppy play, was proud of the way her golfers have performed so far this season.

“I don’t want to take anything away from the players,” Holt said. “They’re at a position where everybody is out to beat them. I told them that there is a certain responsibility that comes with their success. But at the end of the day, we’re still undefeated through three tournaments, and I don’t think any other team in the country can say that.”

Irish junior Lisa Maunu led the way for Notre Dame with her eight-over par 221 (74-72-75). The co-captain birdied six holes in the tournament, leaving her in a tie for second, two strokes off the lead.

Freshman So-Hyun Park finished second for Notre Dame and fifth overall after she fired a nine-over-par 222 (74-71-77). Her second round 71 was the lowest score of any member of the team for the tournament.

Following Park in third was fellow first-year golfer Katie Conway. Her 15-over-par 228 (78-76-74) showed a consistent improvement through the three rounds.

Sophomore pair Annie Brophy and Kristin Wetzel finished in a tie for 26th to round out the Irish golfers. Brophy shot a 22-over-par 235 (77-78-80), while her teammate fired a 235 (79-78-78). Wetzel had an impressive series of holes in the second round when she birdied holes four and five and finished off the front nine with another birdie.

Notre Dame returns to the course on Oct. 19 for the three-day Lady Paladin Invitational hosted by Furman University in Greenville, S.C.