Sara Monberg carded a career-best 68 on Saturday
Oct. 9, 2010
By Zachary Stipe, Media Relations Assistant
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - For the second straight day, sophomores Erica Popson and Sara Monberg carded spectacular rounds at Holston Hills Country Club, as the Tennessee Lady Vol golf team grabbed a whopping 20-stroke lead during round two action of the 2010 Mercedes-Benz Women's Collegiate Championships on Saturday.
Led by Monberg's career-best 68 (-4) and Popson's 69 (-3), UT fired a 4-under 284 total at the par-72, 6,302-yard Donald Ross-designed course. Tennessee's 36-hole total of 564 (-12) shattered the old Lady Vol record of 570 set at the 2010 NCAA East Regional last May.
The Lady Vols will take a large lead into the final day of their home tournament for a second consecutive season. A year ago, Tennessee headed into the final round eight strokes up, before sweeping the tournament team and individual titles.
On Sunday, the Orange and White will be in even better shape than last year, as TCU (584) and Arkansas (584) are the closest challengers.
The Lady Vols will tee off from No. 1 in the final group with the Horned Frogs and Razorbacks at 10:39 a.m. Sunday.
Popson holds a two-stroke lead in the individual race with a Tennessee 36-hole record 8-under 136 total.
"The team went out and played really well again today," Lady Vol head coach Judi Pavon said. "I'm really proud of them. I'm looking forward to seeing them play well tomorrow. Erica has been playing fantastic golf. She likes this golf course, and she was determined to have a good round today."
Popson Discusses Heading into Final Round with the Lead
Popson had four birdies and an eagle on No. 17 to put herself in position to capture her first collegiate tournament title.
"I've been putting really well," Popson said. "Yesterday I hit my driver great, and I did that today for the most part. I'm putting myself in the right spots on the greens and I've been making putts. Hopefully I continue that tomorrow."
On the par-5 No. 17, the Davenport, Fla., native smacked her drive left into a tree, but got a lucky kick back into the fairway. On her second shot she put the ball on the green within 15 feet of the cup. She drilled her second eagle of the weekend after consulting Pavon, who helped her read the putt.
Monberg had the round of the day, nabbing six birdies against just two bogeys for the lowest round of her career. She's two shots back of her classmate Popson in a tie with Mississippi's Natalie Gleadall at 6-under 138. She leads the tournament with 11 birdies.
Junior Nathalie Mansson, the Mercedes-Benz defending champion, eagled No. 17 right before Popson and heads into the final day in a tie for sixth. She recorded a 1-over 73 and has a 2-under 142 total.
Freshman Chessey Thomas and senior Lauren Spurlock rounded out the scoring for the Lady Vols with 2-under 74 totals. Thomas is tied for 25th at 148 (+4), while Spurlock is tied for 30th at 149 (+5). She got Tennessee off to a blistering start on Saturday by carding three birdies and no birdies on the front nine. Playing as an individual, freshman Kaitlyn Rohrback carded a 75 and is also in 30th with a 149. UT's other individual competitors, Leigh Henderson and Rebecca Watson fired a 75 and 78, respectively. Henderson (8-over 152) is tied for 42nd, while Watson (16-over 160) sits in a deadlock for 74th.
Fans are also reminded that Tennessee is partnering with the Knoxville affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure in support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month at this weekend's tournament. Donations to the foundation will be encouraged through bins or by pledging an amount for every birdie the Lady Vols record at the competition for a "Birdies for Breast Cancer" effort at the Knoxville affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure web site: komenknoxville.org.
|LADY VOL SCORES|
|1.||Erica Popson||67-69=136$ (-8)|
|t2.||Sara Monberg||70-68=138 (-6)|
|t6.||Nathalie Mansson||69-73=142 (-2)|
|t25.||Chessey Thomas||74-74=148 (+4)|
|t30.||Lauren Spurlock||75-74=149 (+5)|
|t30.||Kaitlyn Rohrback *||74-75=149 (+5)|
|t42.||Leigh Henderson *||77-75=152 (+8)|
|t74.||Rebecca Watson *||82-78=160 (+16)|
|*Competing as individual.|
|$ Tennessee record for 36-hole total|