March 3, 2012
Hilton Head, S.C. – The Notre Dame women’s golf team got off to a strong start in Saturday’s second round at the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate Tournament and was nine-over par through 12 holes when Mother Nature took over the tournament. Thunderstorms and lightning cancelled play at approximately 3:00 p.m. after play was stopped around noon.
The Irish were in sixth place at the time and are currently 26-over par and trail tournament leader Alabama by 24 shots as the Crimson Tide are two-over as a team for the first two rounds. Second place belongs to North Carolina at 10-over par with Central Florida (+20), Vanderbilt (+23) and Virginia (+25) rounding out the top five and within striking distance for Notre Dame. Five teams are within two shots of the Irish for sixth place.
The tournament is being played on the par-71, 6,160-yard Long Cove Golf Club and is being hosted by the University of South Carolina. Tournament organizers plan to restart the second round on Sunday at 10 a.m. with players placing their balls as close to where they were when play was called today. After the second round is completed, the tournament will end, as several teams have to leave by 2:30 p.m. for travel purposes.
Notre Dame opened the second round with three players in the top 16 – freshman Ashley Armstrong (Flossmoor, Ill.), sophomore Kristina Nhim (Cypress, Calif.) and senior Becca Huffer (Denver, Colo.). All three continued their strong play on Saturday with Armstrong moving up to sixth place
Starting on the seventh hole in the shotgun start, Armstrong birdied three of her first seven holes to go three-under par before closing out the back nine with three consecutive bogeys on 16 through 18 before the rains came. She has six holes left to play on Sunday and is even par for the day and two-over for the tournament.
She is eight strokes behind the tournament leader, Stephanie Meadow of Alabama, who opened with a four-under par 67 on Friday and is now six-under par through nine holes on Saturday.
Nhim started on the ninth hole and bogeyed two of her first five holes before going birdie-bogey-birdie on 14 through 16 to get back to +1 for the day and +4 for the tournament through 10 holes and was tied for 15th when the lightning sirens sounded. She will have eight holes left to play on Sunday morning.
Huffer will have seven holes to play on Sunday after being +6 on Saturday through 11 holes. Starting on the eighth hole, the senior captain bogeyed her first six of her first seven holes before picking up a birdie on 16 and then another bogey on 17. She is now nine-over par for the tournament.
Senior Katie Allare (Phoenix, Ariz.) was +3 after 10 holes and is +12 for the tournament and tied for 57th overall.
Freshman Kelli Oride (Lihue, Hawaii) was +5 for her first nine holes on Saturday and is +19 for the tournament and is 77th overall.
The Darius Rucker Intercollegiate, now a 36-hole tournament, is in its first season and features 12 teams ranked in the top 50 in the country, including three top 10 squads – second-ranked Alabama, eighth-ranked Vanderbilt and 10th-ranked Georgia. The Irish open the spring ranked 52nd in the Golfweek rankings.
TEAM RESULTS (totals incomplete – order when play was stopped): 1. Alabama 288 (+2); 2. North Carolina 292 (+10); 3. Central Florida 297 (+20); 4. Vanderbilt 299 (+23); 5. Virginia 297 (+25); 6. Notre Dame 301 (+26); t7. Georgia 297 (+27); South Carolina 303 (+27); Tennessee 305 (+27); 10. Wake Forest 302 (+28); 11. TCU 301 (+29); 12. Coastal Carolina 307 (+34); 13. Arkansas 305 (+36); 14. Texas 305 (+40); 15. USC-Beaufort 327 (+65).
TOP 10 INDIVIDUALS (of 81): 1. Stephanie Meadow (Alabama) 67 (-6); 2. Brooke Pancake (Alabama) 71 (-1); Katherine Perry (North Carolina) 72 (-1); 4. Marta Silva Zamora (Georgia) 71 (E); 5. Brooke Beeler (TCU) 71 (+1); t6. Ashley Armstrong (Notre Dame) 73 (+2); Katie Burnett (South Carolina) 72 (+2); Allie White (North Carolina) 74 (+2); Monifa Sealy (Central Florida) 70 (+2); t10. Catherine O’Donnell (North Carolina) 72 (+3); Kaitlyn Rohrback (Tennessee) 74 (+3); Briana Mao (Virginia) 73 (+3); Brittany Altomare (Virginia) 73 (+3); Jessica Alexander (Coastal Carolina) 73 (+3).