DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- After the sting of having its winning streak snapped, Lynn’s top-ranked team returned to what it does best: winning golf tournaments. And boy, did the Fighting Knights win in memorable fashion, setting program records for 18- and 36-hole scoring in winning the Bash-at-the-Beach Invitational by 27 strokes.
Adding to the accomplishments, Lynn saw all five starters finish in the top-six for the first time in school history, the team broke the record for top-10 finishes in a season with 33, Jessica Bradley broke the record for individual top-10 finishes by placing in the top 10 for the 10th consecutive tournament and Samantha Smolen became the school’s career leader in top-10 finishes.
The Blue & White were looking for a quality score in their final round before the Sunshine State Conference championship. They left little doubt about their readiness for the league tournament after shooting a 10-under par 282 team round, surpassing the previous school record by three strokes. Lynn’s 579 total topped the program record by three strokes also. Only one other team, Stetson, was able to shoot under 300 on the day. Flagler clinched second place at 606, followed by the Hatters at 612. Seminole State (615) and host Embry-Riddle (624) rounded out the top-five.
Lynn had three golfers, Bradley, Louise Manalo and Smolen, post a three-under par 70 on the 6,106-yard par 73 LPGA International Jones Course. Smolen led the Fighting Knights contingent with a 143 total to place second, two shots back of Chanya Angwarawong of Seminole State. Smolen, out of Lake Worth, Fla., collected the 23rd top-10 finish in her career, surpassing Maha Haddioui for first place in school history.
Louise Manalo took third individually with a 144 score for her fourth top-10 finish of the season. Bradley followed behind in fourth place and is now tied with Haddioui with 22 top-10 finishes in a career.
Not many times do you throw away an under-par score but the Fighting Knights had the luxury of choosing between one-under par 72s from both Irene Calvo and Ellen Chambers. Calvo placed fifth, her highest finish of the season, with a 147 while Chambers shot a 148 to tie for sixth, her fifth top-10 finish of the year.
Also in the mix was Estefania Buritica, who posted a 165 to finish as the second-best individual unattached to a team.
The Fighting Knights will look for win No. 9 of the season when they take part in the Sunshine State Conference Championship, beginning April 13.