HOUSTON – The first of four rounds is complete and it’s UT Tyler that everyone will be chasing at the NCAA Division III Women’s Golf Championships after the Patriots went out and shot a 303 team total during Tuesday’s opening day at Bay Oaks Country Club.
The Patriots have four players in the top-10 with Morgan Loth in sixth after carding an opening-round total of 75 (3-over-par), while Laura Lindsey, Stephanie Tutt and Amy Cox are tied for 10th after the trio UT Tyler golfers shot 76s. Taylor Denton turned in an 81 and is 39th entering Wednesday’s second round that will start with her teeing off at 7:45 a.m. on the back-nine of the Houston course.
“We got off to a great start,” UT Tyler coach Grant Spencer said. “Our front nine was excellent. We gave some back but we can’t complain about being in the lead after day one.”
Loth, who is coming off winning the American Southwest Conference Championship for her first career victory, opened with her round of 75 with three birdies. A junior lefty, Loth had eight pars and six bogeys on Tuesday. She carded her birdies on two par 4s and one par 3. Lindsey, the 2013 DIII National Champion, opened her final national tournament with three birdies and nine pars. She would backtrack some on her scorecard with a double bogey on the par-5 fifth hole and also had five bogeys.
Cox would card her 76 with three birdies and 10 pars on her score card. A sophomore, Cox limited herself to three bogeys and two doubles in the round where she birdied a par 3, 4 and 5. Tutt’s round of 76 came with her birding a par 3 on the front and a par 5 on the back-nine to go along with 10 pars. She had bogeys on six holes but did not double throughout her opening 18 holes.
Denton, a freshman playing in her first national tournament, shot the 81 in her opening round with one birdie and nine pars. She would bogey six holes and had two double bogeys in the round where she birdied the par-5 fifth hole.
George Fox is currently second and four shots back of the Patriots after shooting a 307 total, while Wittenberg is third with a 310. Macy Hubbard of Wittenberg leads the tournament after shooing a 2-under-par 69 and Phoebe Nguyen (Whitman) is second with a 70. UT Tyler is paired with Rhodes College which is currently fourth (312) and Redlands which is seventh (318) in the 21-team national competition.