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TEMPE, Ariz. The 16th-ranked University of Arkansas women’s golf team posted an opening round one-over 289 and is tied for fifth at the 2009 NCAA West Regional Championship in Tempe, Ariz., Thursday.
Arkansas carded a one-over in the morning round dealing with temperatures approaching the century mark. The hot sun only became more intense as the round went on and continued to heat up as the second flight of teams went off in the afternoon.
“We played a good, solid opening round today,” said Arkansas head coach Shauna Estes-Taylor. “We didn’t play our best golf and that’s good. We can improve and I think there are a lot of birdies to be had out there. We want to go out and execute good golf shoots these next two days and see if we can move up the leaderboard.”
Senior Lucy Nunn, junior Kristin Ingram and freshman Katy Nugent were all even for the day with first round 72s on the par 72, 6,230-yard Karsten Golf Course on the campus of Arizona State University.
Nugent’s round ties her collegiate best score.
“I walked a lot of shots with Katy today and we talked about club selection and shot placement,” said Estes-Taylor. “She made some good decisions out there and its fun to see a freshman start to get it. They were all really solid. I feel good about where we are. We want to continue to execute our game plan and move up the leaderboard in the coming days.”
The trio of Nunn, Nugent and Ingram are tied for 17th overall.
Sophomore Kelli Shean counted a one-over 73 and is tied for 33rd while junior Alex Schulte posted a 75 in the first round and is tied for 54th.
Top-ranked Arizona State quickly moved to the top of that leaderboard on the Sun Devils’ home course. They turned in a 15-under 273 grabbing a 13 stroke lead over a pair of Lone Star State teams who came out of the afternoon session. Texas, ranked No. 45, is tied for second with 288, along with No. 39 Texas A&M and No. 22 Arizona.
Arkansas, No. 36 TCU, No. 4 Southern California and No. 25 UC-Irvine are tied for fifth with 289.
The rest of the field includes No. 21 California in ninth with 291, No. 29 San Francisco and No. 13 Perpperdine tied for 10th with 294 and No. 8 LSU 12th with 298. There is a six-way tie for 13th between No. 18 San Jose State, No. 34 UNLV, Northern Arizona, No. 47 Long Beach State, No. 41 Oregon and Baylor all of whom shot 299. Forty-fourth-ranked Colorado is 19th with 309, Oral Roberts carded 312 and Texas A&M Corpus Christi had 315 to round out the field.
Play at the West Regional continues through Saturday with the top eight teams moving on to the NCAA Championships at Ownings Mills, M.D. For more information about Arkansas golf, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.