ND Women’s Golf
Irish challenge top-25 competition
Brian Plamondon | Thursday, March 20, 2014
The Irish will face a tough field including ranked opponents this weekend in Baton Rouge, La., where they will compete in the LSU Golf Classic.
Notre Dame will square off with No. 4 Arkansas, No. 16 UCF, Kentucky and No. 17 LSU, among others.
The Irish are coming off a second-place finish this past weekend in Arizona at the Clover Cup, a tournament they hosted. They finished with a three-day total of 889, just one shot behind Louisville. At the Clover Cup, played at Longbow Golf Club, senior Kristina Nhim turned in one of the best performances of her career. She came in first overall with a three-day score of 213, three under par.
“[Kristina] played a golf course that she’s had the opportunity to play for three years now,” Irish coach Susan Holt said. “She knows the course well. It’s kind of tricky and has a lot of tricked-up holes on it. I think that her experience on the course really paid off for her. She had really solid, consistent rounds, and I was really happy for her that it all came together.”
Aside from Nhim, junior Ashley Armstrong and freshman Jordan Ferreira finished strong, each carding a 72 on Sunday. The whole team benefited from spring break, escaping frigid temperatures in South Bend for an eight-day trip to Arizona. With the poor weather and snow into March, the Irish have not been able to practice or play nearly as much as they would like.
“We were finally able to get outside for an extended period of time,” Holt said. “We got in some really good, quality practice, got to know the golf course playing it a few extra times. We were able to get out consecutive days, get a rhythm going, really benefited us.”
Although Holt does not like to schedule tournaments on back-to-back weekends due to schoolwork and travel, she thinks it will help her team’s consistency.
“I think it’s really going to be advantageous for us, since the weather is still bad,” Holt said. “We’re turning right around and competing this weekend, which will get us back outside, which is very important this time of year as we’re heading into the conference championship.”
The Irish will be moving from a course they know extremely well to one that only three golfers—Nhim, Armstrong and junior Kelli Oride—have played before. The forecast at The University Club in Baton Rouge is calling for temperatures in the low 70s.
Notre Dame will rely on a balanced group of golfers, with five girls’ scoring averages between 74.40 and 76.14. Armstrong, Oride and Nhim all have top-ten finishes so far this season, while sophomore Talia Campbell leads the way with five top-25 finishes.
“Our goal this spring is to be competitive and get better every time out,” Holt said. “Every day of every tournament improve. We had a nice steady improvement this last time out, which I was really pleased with.”
The Irish begin play at the LSU Golf Classic at The University Club in Baton Rouge, La., this Friday.