ND Women’s Golf: Irish secure season-best fifth place
Drew Pangraze | Wednesday, March 21, 2012
The Irish secured a spring season-best fifth place finish over the weekend at the inaugural Clover Cup tournament at the Longbow Golf Club in Mesa, Ariz.
Freshman Ashley Armstrong led the Irish on the first day of the tournament with a career-best, five-under par 67 to beat her previous best (71) by four strokes. It was the third-lowest round in Notre Dame school history and placed Armstrong in second place for the individual standings.
Armstrong credited her performance to a great round of putting, which helped her take full advantage of the course.
Notre Dame finished Friday’s opening round with a tally of 288, putting the team on par and in second place behind Colorado. It was just the fourth time in program history that the Irish have shot an even-par total or better in a single round – the record is a three-under 281 in the second round of the 2008-2009 Heather Farr Memorial.
The squad’s stellar play continued on Saturday with the Irish shooting an eight-over par 296. This positioned the Irish in third place overall after 36 holes with an eight-over par total of 584. Sophomore Kristina Nhim led the Irish on day two with her second-straight even-par round, placing her 10th in the individual standings. Armstrong finished the day fifth in the individual standings with a two-over-par 74 in her second round.
Sunday’s final round brought chilly weather, rain and even brief periods of hail. The team completed the weekend with a final-round total of 321, giving the Irish a 54-hole mark of 905 to finish fifth in the 12-team field.
Colorado finished first in the tournament with a 54-hole total of 855, 31 strokes better than second-place Oklahoma. Notre Dame’s Armstrong and Nhim both struggled on Sunday, firing an 83 and 80, respectively.
“Play was difficult on Sunday because of the cold temperatures, rain and even brief periods of hail, but that isn’t an excuse for my poor round,” Armstrong said. “I have played in those conditions before and I know what to expect. Going forward, as a member of the team I need to work on finishing my last round strong.”
Senior Becca Huffer ended up as Notre Dame’s top finisher in the tournament with a five-over par 221, giving her a tie for eighth place in the individual standings after rounds of 72, 75 and 74.
“The team played pretty well over parts of the weekend, but as a whole we just did not finish well on Sunday,” Armstrong said. “[Huffer], however, posted three solid rounds.
“The team and I have a week to practice and work before our next tournament and about a month before Big East.”
Next on the schedule for the Irish is the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic at the University of Georgia Golf Club, beginning March 30.
Contact Drew Pangraze at [email protected]