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Matthew Robison | Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Coming off a second-place finish in their first MIAA match of the season, the No. 5 Belles will look to reclaim the top spot in the conference at Thornapple Pointe Golf Club.

On Saturday, the Belles were beaten by No. 12 Olivet at the first MIAA Jamboree. Belles coach Mark Hamilton said a certain degree of that finish was a result of inclement weather.

“Better weather allows better players to make good shots,” Hamilton said. He fully expects Saint Mary’s to come out and play much better today.

“We’re really anxious to get back out there,” Hamilton said. “We’re a better team and we want to go out and make a bunch of birdies.”

Despite the second place finish, Hamilton said the Belles still played good golf.

“If we play just as well as we did in the rain Saturday, we should win [today],” Hamilton said.

Today marks the second of four MIAA Jamborees. Because each team in the conference participates in these matches, every shot and every round counts cumulatively toward conference standings. If the Belles want to return to familiar territory atop the MIAA, they will need to play slightly better than last weekend.

Hamilton knows that the players understand the importance of these matches, as well.

“They know they played pretty well Saturday,” Hamilton said. “We don’t like getting beat by conference foes.”

Hamilton said the Belles’ mindset is focused on winning and winning alone. Saint Mary’s prides itself on being one of the best golf programs in Division III, and national prominence starts with conference dominance. Today will be another opportunity for the Belles to prove their mettle.

Senior captain Mary Kate Boyce and freshman Marin Beagley tied for second on Saturday, and expect to pace the Belles again today. Fellow senior captain Rosie O’Connor handed in the eighth highest score Saturday, so she will look to creep back into the top spots.

Calvin will play host for the Jamboree as the Belles tee off today at 1 p.m. at Thornapple Pointe Golf Club.