BATON ROUGE – Eighth-ranked Arkansas may have extended its lead after Saturday’s second round of the LSU Tiger Golf Classic, but the Lady Razorbacks have a whole host of company close enough behind them to make things interesting, including the 30th-ranked Lady Tigers of LSU who made a strong rally from eighth to second at the University Club.
LSU posted the second best round of the event, a six-over 294, to move from eighth place and 13 shots back to a tie for second with Tulane and 10 shots back. LSU is at 24-over par 600 (306-294), while the Wave’s 600 came on rounds of 298-302.
Arkansas posted rounds of 293-297 for a 14-over 590 total as the Lady Razorbacks try for their second LSU Tiger Golf Classic title in the last three years, having won in 2011 with a score of 888.
LSU junior Lindsay Gahm and her consistent play has put her in contention for a championship as she has fired back-to-back rounds of even par 72 to stand 144 and in a four-way tie for the lead entering Sunday’s final round. For the second straight day, Gahm had it to 2-under on the round but had two bogeys over the final four holes to settle for even, which may be the score needed to take home the top prize when play ends on Sunday.
Gahm is trying to become the ninth LSU individual to win the tournament in its 30-plus year history. Megan McChrystal was the last to take home the trophy in the 2010 event played at English Turn. The last LSU golfer to win on the University Club course was Meredith Duncan in 2002.
In the two years, the event has been played over the renovated U-Club layout, Lindy Duncan of Duke won in a playoff after tying at 2-over 218 and last year Catherine O’Donnell of UNC and Erica Popson of Tennessee tied at 2-under 214 and were declared co-champs because of time constraints.
Speaking of Popson, she is position to be the first player to win the tournament not only back-to-back, but twice in its long history as she is tied with Gahm at the top of the board after rounds of 71-73. Popson had the lead and had her round to 2-under (3-under for the tournament) until she double bogeyed the long par 5 third hole (her 15th of the day) and bogeyed the par 4 fourth (her 16th).
Also tied for the lead are Ericka Schneider of Ole Miss (75-69) and Emily Tubert of Arkansas (72-72). Schneider had a four-birdie final 14 holes to shoot her 69 and Tubert birdied two of the final four holes to get back to even.
Four more golfers, including Maribel Lopez Porras of Tulane (71-74) are tied at 1-over 145 and still very much in the hunt at 2-over 146 by herself in 9th place is LSU sophomore Madelene Sagstrom after firing a 4-under 68 in the second round after her opening 78. She moved up 25 spots in the standings.
Sagstrom had six birdies in her round in her round, posting 2-under 34s on both sides. Sagstrom would have posted the lowest score for women on the renovated course at 68, but Georgia’s Kailey Walsh, playing as an individual competitor, topped her with a 5-under 67, the lowest score shot by a female collegiate player in the three-years the tournament has been held over the renovated course that plays at 6,300-yards for the tournament.
What was a slow start on Friday, turned in to a round that had the Lady Tigers firing back at the top of the lineup, determined to get back into contention to keep their record of improvement at each event alive. With Sagstrom posting 4-under and Gahm even, the LSU Tigers got an important 15 shot improvement from junior Ali Lucas who posted a 1-under round of 71.
Tulane, besides Porras, had consistent counting scores of 75 from Emily Penttila, 76 from Silvia Garces and 77 from Gemma Dryburgh. Penettila and Opfer are tied for 24th at 152. ULM finished the second day in 13th place at 642 (323-319) and the Warhawks have been paced by Valentine Loge at 8-over 152 (77-75) who is tied for 24th.
The final round is set for a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. with Arkansas, LSU and Tulane in the final wave that will start on the first three holes. Admission to the U-Club is free of charge. Follow LSU women’s golf on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LSUwomensgolf and on Twitter @LSUwomensgolf.
LSU TIGER GOLF CLASSIC
Baton Rouge, La.
Second Round Team Results (288-576)
1. Arkansas 293-297 – 590 +14; 2. LSU 306-294 – 600 +24; 2. Tulane 298-302 – 600 +24; 4. Tennessee 305-297 – 602 +26; 5. North Carolina State 302-301 – 603 +27; 6. TCU 301-303 – 604 +28; 7. Florida State 301-307 – 608 +32; 7. Georgia 315-293 – 608 +32; 9. Kentucky 304-311 – 615 +39; 10. Ole Miss 322-294 – 616 +40; 11. Wake Forest 316-302 – 618 +42; 12. Missouri 309-315 – 624 +48; 13. ULM 323-319 – 642 +66; 14. North Carolina Wilmington 664 +88.
Second Round Individual Top 20 (72-144)
1. Lindsay Gahm, LSU, 72-72 – 144 E; 1. Ericka Schneider, Ole Miss, 75-69 – 144 E; 1. Erica Popson, Tennessee, 71-73 – 144 E; 1. Emily Tubert, Arkansas, 72-72 – 144 E; 5. Jessica Negron, Florida State, 72-73 – 145 +1; 5. Maribel Lopez Porras, Tulane, 71-74 – 145 +1; 5. Sanna Nuutinen, TCU, 72-73 – 145 +1; Kailey Walsh, Georgia, 78-67 – 145 +1; 9. Madelene Sagstrom, LSU, 78-68 – 146 +2; 10. AJ Newell, Tennessee, 73-74 – 147 +3; Gabriela Lopez, Arkansas, 71-76 – 147 +3; 3. Ana Menendez, NC State, 75-72 – 147 +3; 13. Marissa Dodd, Wake Forest, 76-72 – 148 +4; Alexandra Bonetti, TCU, 73-75 – 148 +4; 14. Rachael Taylor, NC State, 75-73 – 148 +4; 16. Emilie Burger, Georgia, 78-71 – 149 +5; 16. Michelle Butler, Missouri, 76-73 – 149 +5; Olivia Hullert, Florida State, 73-76 – 149 +5; 19. Emma Lavy, Arkansas, 74-76 – 150 +6; 19. Manuela Carbajo, Georgia, 78-72 – 150 +6.
T1. Lindsay Gahm 72-72 – 144 E
9. Madelene Sagstrom 78-68 – 146 +2
T51. Ali Lucas 88-71 – 159 +15
T58. Elise Bradley 77-85 – 162 +18
T58. Nadine Dreher 79-83 –162 +18
T58 Katrina Hegge 85-77 – 162 +18
KAREN BAHNSEN QUOTES
On the second round –
“I’m proud of them because even though we had some adversity with a couple of them having some big numbers we kept persevering and trying very hard. We didn’t give in to that which would be easy with such a young group. We had to keep our composure and we went out and they did it. They just took it one shot at a time and got us back in position to have a chance to win this tournament on Sunday.”
On Gahm and Sagstrom in the individual competition –
“Well, we will kind of let those things take care of themselves. We are going to go out and not focus on that. I would love for either one of those girls to break through. Why not a tie? That would be cool. But they are very capable of that. So I would like to see that happen it would be fun.”
On the 15-stroke improvement by Ali Lucas –
“It was one of those things where he was pulling it a lot (Friday) and couldn’t figure it out. So we hit some ball (Friday) afternoon and it was better. On the golf course, she asked me to start with her and she pulled the first one and so I realized I needed to stick around and I tried to help her get her confidence and think of a couple of little basic things and make sure she was on track with where she lined up. She putted and chipped great. I told her (Friday) it was golf and it was just one of those days. She did a great job keeping it all in perspective.”