Shelton Two Shots Off Individual Lead at NCAA's
SUNRIVER, Ore. — On a day that started cold and rainy and finished with the wind gusting upwards of 25 miles per hour, LSU senior golfer Brooke Shelton watched the entire field tee off in front of her Tuesday in the second round of the NCAA Division I Championships and then proceeded to keep pace with the best in women’s collegiate golf.
At the halfway point of the 72-hole tournament, Shelton is four-over par on the par-71 Meadows Course at Sunriver Resort, and is just two strokes off a logjam of a lead at the top. Shelton’s four-over 75 in the second round Wednesday was one of the best scores posted in a day that saw all the teams that shot in the morning wave move to the front of the leader board.
Shelton’s round was a little bit of a roller coaster as putter troubles on the front side put her four over on the round after bogeys on the first (for the second straight day), the fifth, seventh and eighth holes. But after bogeying the 11th hole (par 4, 384 yards) to go five over, Shelton nailed a pitching wedge from 120 yards out on the 351-yard par 4 hole and the ball rolled into the cup for an eagle two, putting her back to three over.
From there, it was just about getting home in the fading sunlight, with only one more stumble on the par 4 15th to come in with what would be a very strong afternoon round of four-over.
Shelton, although just two from the lead, is actually in a group tied for ninth as four golfers — Charlotte Mayorkas (UCLA), Diana Ramage (Auburn), Dewi Schreefel (Southern Cal) and Eileen Vargas (Pepperdine) are tied for first at two-over par, while four more golfers, including Maria Martinez of Auburn are tied for fifth at three-over par.
“She nailed the pitching wedge,” LSU coach Karen Bahnsen said late Wednesday night. “It was a perfect shot. She struggled a bit with the putter on the front nine, but really hung in there and we’re very pleased with how she has performed.”
Pepperdine and Auburn, both out early on the day, are tied for the team lead after 36 holes at 18-over par 586. Pepperdine has shot rounds of 291-295 and Auburn 290-296 to open up a four shot lead over UCLA at 22-over 590. California is fourth at 594 and Duke is fifth at 595. First round leader Southern California finished 28-over on Wednesday’s round and is now at 31-over 599. Tennessee and Arkansas from the SEC are tied for eighth at 35-over 603 and Florida is two shots further back tied for 12th at 605.
Shelton will be off in the morning wave in the third round on Thursday, teeing off at 11:50 a.m. CDT (9:50 a.m. PDT).
Highlights of Thursday’s third round can be seen at midnight CDT on The Golf Channel (Digital Cable 250 in Baton Rouge) and live scoring for the event can be found at www.golfstat.com.