BRADENTON, Fla. -- The birdies came first. The lightning came next.
Stanford was on a roll before the second of two weather delays eventually suspended the opening round of the NCAA Championships at The Concession Golf Course on Friday.Four Cardinal women’s golfers were coming off birdies -- with a fifth looking at a makeable birdie putt -- before the sirens indicated the day was over.
Through 11 holes, the Cardinal is 3-over to lead the field and will resume its first round Saturday morning before embarking on round two.
Mariah Stackhouse leads the medalist race at 4-under with a bogey-free 12 holes.
“We’ve got a lot of golf left, and some of these holes coming in are the most challenging,” Stanford head coach Anne Walker said. “It’s a long week, and our challenge is to stay focused and adjust to the course conditions.
“If it was an 11-hole championship, I’d be doing cartwheels.”
Defending champion Duke is second after completing its round at 5-over.
Stackhouse, a two-time All-American, had three birdies in the first five holes and tapped-in for birdie on the par-4 12th after a stretch of six straight pars.
Lauren Kim (+1) is tied for 13th and Florida native Shannon Aubert (E) is tied for eight. Casey Danielson’s 6-over came with a triple bogey on the par-5 eighth, the lone setback in what has been an outstanding first round for the sophomore.
Quirine Eijkenboom birdied 14 to move to 11 before the suspension.
The event features 24 teams and 12 individual competitors dueling in 54 holes of stroke play. Following the final of those four rounds, top 15 teams plus the top-nine individuals all advance to another day of stroke play on. The results of that round will determine the individual 72-hole champion. It also will cull the final 15 teams for Wednesday’s seeded match-play round that will determine the team champion.
The Golf Channel will provide live coverage of the final three rounds from Monday-Wednesday.