May 7, 2004
For the second straight round at the NCAA East Regional, the University of Tennessee Lady Volunteer golf team endured a slow start on the El Campeon course at the Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla. A strong back nine for the Lady Vols kept the team in contention for a top-eight finish and a spot in the NCAA Championships heading in to Saturday's final round.
Tennessee's 37-over score of 613 leaves the team in ninth, 35 shots behind tournament leader Duke. The Blue Devils fired a four-over 292 to extend their lead over the field of 21. UNLV remains in second 16 strokes back of Duke after shooting a nine-over 297, putting the team at 18-over for the tournament. North Carolina's round of 294 (six-over) brings its weekend score to 597, which is good for third place.
"Putting was the key to our round today," UT Head Coach Judi Pavon said. "Violeta (Retamoza) started well, but had a couple of bogeys in the middle of the round, which is really uncharacteristic of her. She just could not get her putts to drop. Jessica (Shepley) hit her first three greens but three-putted on each hole. It is definitely something to work on before tomorrow."
With Retamoza (Aguascalientes, Mexico) and Shepley (Oakville, Ontario, Canada) struggling on the greens, UT's other players delivered solid efforts. For the second straight day, the Lady Vols were lead individually by Golda Johansson. The sophomore from Lund, Sweden was able to rebound from consecutive double-bogeys on the par-four 3 and 4 holes to sink a team-high five birdies and finish with a two-over 74. For the tournament, Johansson is four-over with a score of 148, to remain in tie for 13th.
"Golda has been working exceptionally hard," Pavon said. "She got frazzled early on, but I told her to trust herself and the way she has played recently. From there, she was able to calm down and relax to have a solid round."
"After the two double bogeys, I made myself put the driver away and focused on hitting the ball on the fairways and greens," Johansson said. "I tried to put myself in a position to make some putts."
Freshman Holly Cantwell was equally impressive in the second round, leading the team with 12 pars on the day and finishing with a four-over 76. At 13-over-par for the tournament, the Morristown, Tenn. native stands in a tie for 50th.
"Holly was able to make a lot of 15-20 putts for pars and birdies," Pavon said. "She was clearly disappointed with the way she played yesterday and was determined to help her team today. She had a lot of heart and pride out there today."
Cantwell agreed that her putting was the key to her round.
"I didn't hit all the fairways today," Cantwell said. "I was able to hit some key long putts for par.
Junior Teesha Ash (Chattanooga, Tenn.) bettered her first day score by nine shots, shooting a six-over 78.
For the tournament's final day on Saturday, Pavon says it is important for her team to get off to a good start.
"If we can start well, we can just play golf. It will be important for us to focus on our game and not worry about anyone else.
UT will be in the morning group of tee times on Sunday and will begin play between 8:10 and 9:40 a.m.
NCAA East Regional
At Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort
El Campeon course, Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla.
|16||North Carolina State||+57||316-317=633|
|21||St. Francis (Pa.)||+103||338-341=679|
|Top Scorer (field=108):|
|1.||Meaghan Francella, |