Sepmoree leads Women's Golf on day one at NCAA Championship
May 22, 2012
FRANKLIN, Tenn. -- Junior Katelyn Sepmoree led the Texas Women’s Golf team with a 1-under-par 71 in Tuesday’s opening round of the NCAA Championship at Vanderbilt Legends Club. The Longhorns are tied for 11th place at 9-over 297 with counting team scores from Sepmoree, freshman Bertine Strauss (74), senior Nicole Vandermade (76) and junior Haley Stephens (76).
Sepmoree was one of just 17 players in the championship field to card a subpar round as Tuesday’s average scorecard checked in at 75.23.
Beginning her round on the 10th tee as Texas’ No. 3 player, Sepmoree encountered her only bogey on the par-4, 382-yard 11th hole. She made pars on the following 12 holes before sinking her birdie putt on six – her 15th hole of the day. Sepmoree barely missed a closing eagle when her 30-foot chip missed the cup by mere inches. She tapped in for birdie to result in the 1-under performance.
Including a career-low 69 in the finale of the NCAA East Regional Championship where she finished tied for seventh place, Sepmoree is averaging a team-best 70.0 strokes over her last two competitive rounds. This week’s event is her first appearance in a national championship.
Strauss’ scorecard contained a lone birdie on 14 and bogeys on 10, three and four. Her birdie attempt on nine – Strauss’ final hole – had too much speed on the tested green and rolled two feet past the hole. She is tied for 34th place while making her NCAA Championship debut.
Vandermade’s round was a roller coaster of ups-and-downs in more ways than one. She played her finale five holes at 2-under with birdies on five and seven, but it wasn’t enough to offset five bogeys and a double on 14. While putting for birdie on nine, a player in the group behind hit onto the green as Vandermade’s putter made impact with the ball. A startled Vandermade left the putt halfway from the hole where she later made par to finish at 4-over 76 and tied for 70th.
Stephens also finished at 76 with two birdies, four bogeys and one double. Junior Desiree Dubreuil rounds out the Texas squad at 9-over 81.
Alabama leads the 24-team field at 2-under 286, two strokes better than second-place Virginia (288, E) and three strokes better than Duke (289, +1).
Individually, Virginia’s Portland Rosen shot a 66 for the first-round lead. Purdue’s Laura Gonzalez (67) is one stroke back of Rosen, while North Carolina’s Catherine O'Donnell and Alabama’s Brooke Pancake are in a tie for third with 68s.
The Longhorns are slotted for Wednesday’s first tee time at 7:30 a.m. Central off the first tee alongside Purdue and Pepperdine. Third-round tee times will be determined based on team scores after 36 holes.
On playing in Wednesday’s morning wave as opposed to Tuesday’s afternoon wave: The greens will be a little bit more receptive in the morning, since they dry out as the day goes on. I think the ideal scoring conditions are probably in the morning. We feel good about what we shot today, but we know we can do better. The morning wave offers us a chance to go to dinner, go to bed and come back out here first thing.
On junior Katelyn Sepmoree’s performance over the last two rounds: She’s become comfortable with her swing and the shots she needs to hit. She’s trusting herself and not overthinking things. It’s fun to see her play like this.
First-round Team Standings
First-round Top-11 Individual Standings