Auburn, Concolino Take Titles at LSU Classic

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
Complete Tournament Coverage Tournament Statistics +0
Auburn, Concolino Take Titles at LSU Classic

BATON ROUGE — The Auburn and LSU women’s golf teams battled almost stroke-for-stroke over the final 18 holes of the LSU/Cleveland Golf Classic and when the final round Sunday was done, both teams had posted one-under par team totals and the teams still had to look over their shoulders at another onrushing SEC team.

Auburn and LSU both shot one-under 287, meaning the fifth-ranked Auburn Tigers held on to their two-stroke advantage and win the 25th edition of the tournament for the second time this decade. Auburn posted round of 297-289-287 for a nine-over par 873 total, one shot worse than their winning score on the same course in 2001. It was the fifth lowest 54-hole score ever posted in a women’s collegiate event at the LSU home course.

LSU finished with rounds of 298-290-287 for an 11-over 875. It was the fourth sub-par round by an LSU women’s golf team Sunday and the third 54-hole total in the program’s history as LSU fell just short of defending their championship of a year ago.

But it was Vanderbilt that both teams had to keep an eye on as the Commodores, winners of the 2004 SEC Championships on the same course, posted an amazing nine-under par round of 279 in the perfect conditions to finish at 878, 14-over (307-292-279). That beat by one shot what many felt was a nearly unbeatable course record of 280 posted by Duke in the 2002 NCAA Regionals.

Both Auburn and LSU had consistent numbers with Nicole Hage putting up the lowest number of the two teams with a four-under 68. Maria Martinez shot 71 and Jessica Lovell and Margaret Shirley had two-over 74s. LSU countered with a consistent scoring round that featured 71s from Rebecca Kuhn and Kim Meck, a 72 from Melissa Eaton and a 73 by senior Vicky Meyer in her final collegiate appearance at the University Club.

Eaton’s 72 following her course record 66 on Saturday fell just short of taking home the individual crown as Jacqui Concolino shot a 67 of her own to follow her 68 on Saturday to win the title by one shot over Eaton. Concolino’s three-day total of six-under 210 (75-68-67) tied the course record set by Leigh Anne Hardin of Duke in winning the 2002 NCAA Regionals. Eaton rallied late in the round to get back even with Concolino after she reached six-under, but a late bogey forced Eaton into second.

Eaton’s 66 didn’t last long as the solo course record as defending champion Chris Brady of Vanderbilt made another splash in the Cleveland Classic record book, throwing her own 66 on the record page as she finished in a tie for fourth at even par 216. Eaton’s five-under 211 is the second lowest score ever shot for a 54-hole tournament in LSU women’s golf history.

While Eaton led the tournament in birdies with 15, Concolino played the par-5 holes in six-under par.

For Auburn, a slow start lead to a consistent finish in the tournament.

“We were consistent,” said Auburn coach Kim Evans. “Other than the first three or four holes of the first day, we played real consistent. The course set up for really low numbers (Sunday). I think being heads up with LSU all day you get a little tight, but we played through it. LSU played incredible. We’re proud of the win. It’s early in the spring, and we’re going to just try to keep going forward.”

LSU Coach Karen Bahnsen‘s Tigers hated to lose, but feels there are things to be gained.

“Obviously, we didn’t like the fact that we got beat by two, but at the same token we played some great golf,” said Bahnsen. “When you shoot one-under and you get beat, those are the times you can’t be disappointed. What makes us feel good is we just pushed the No. 5 team in the country to the last hole, the last putt, the last strokes. That gives this team a good boost of confidence because we felt like we were capable of playing some good golf. It’s good to see them coming together and getting some confidence to carry on.”

Besides, Melissa Eaton‘s runnerup finish, her seventh career top 10 effort, Kuhn finished in a tie for eighth (72-75-71) at two-over 218 as did freshman teammate Caroline Martens (75-71-72) who played the event as an individual.

LSU’s next event is the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational at Kaneohe, Hawaii March 21-22.

LSU/Cleveland Golf Classic

Final Team Results (Par 288-864)
1. Auburn 297-289-287 — 873 +9; 2. LSU 298-290-287 — 875 +11; 3. Vanderbilt 307-292-279 — 878 +14; 4. Virginia 294-303-297 — 894 +30; 5. Alabama 310-301-290 — 901 +37; 6. Furman 311-296-302 — 909 +45; 7. Charleston 311-304-295 — 910 +46; 8. Mississippi State 304-304-303 — 911 +47; 9. Kentucky 303-308-302 — 913 +49; 10. Louisville 307-309-300 — 916 +52; 11. Augusta State 304-310-303 — 917 +53; 11. Florida State 312-306-299 — 917 +53; 13. North Carolina 315-307-298 — 920 +56; 14. North Carolina State 307-312-305 — 924 +60; 14. UNCW 319-298-307 — 924 +60; 16. Ole Miss 320-309-308 — 937 +73; 17. Birmingham-Southern 327-319-310 — 956 +92; 18. James Madison 325-335-313 — 973 +109.

Individual Top 25 (Par 72-216)
1. Jacqui Concolino, Vandy, 75-68-67 — 210 -6; 2. Melissa Eaton, LSU, 73-66-72 — 211 -5; 3. Nicole Hage, Auburn, 76-69-68 — 213 -3; 4. Chris Brady, Vanderbilt, 76-74-66 — 216 E; 4. Kathleen Ekey, Furman, 72-73-71 — 216 E; 6. Maria Martinez, Auburn, 72-74-71 — 217 +1; 6. Jenny Suh, Alabama, 76-72-69 — 217 -1; 8. Rebecca Kuhn, LSU, 72-75-71 — 218 +2; 8. Caroline Martens, LSU, 75-71-72 — 218 +2; 10. Leah Wigger, Virginia, 71-73-75 — 219 +3; 11. Jennie Arseneault, Virginia, 71-73-75 — 220 +4; 11. Stephanie Noser, UNCW, 78-69-73 — 220 +4; 13. Alexis Rather, LSU, 74-73-74 — 221 +5; 13. Adrienne White, Louisville, 76-73-72 — 221 +5; 15. Jessica Lovell, Auburn, 74-74-74 — 222 +6; 15. Amanda Mathis, Miss. St., 75-73-74 — 222 +6; 15. Carly Truitt, Virginia, 74-74-74 — 222 +6; 18. Angie Hill, Charleston, 75-74-74 — 223 +7; 18. Kristen Svicarovich, Vanderbilt, 78-73-72 — 223 +7; 20. Margaret Shirley, Auburn, 77-73-74 — 224 +8; 21. Erin Faulkner, Kentucky, 75-78-72 — 225 +9; 21. Cindy LaCrosse, Louisville, 73-76-76 — 225 +9; 21. Sarah Sturm, Alabama, 78-75-72 — 225 +9; 24. Dori Carter, Ole Miss, 76-75-75 — 226 +10; 24. Ashleigh Korzack, Miss. St., 74-75-77 — 226 +10; 24. Ann Laney, North Carolina, 76-77-73 — 226 +10; 24. Garrett Phillips, Augusta State, 70-78-78 — 226 +10; 24. Julia von Rohrscheidt, Charleston, 78-76-72 — 226 +10; 24. Caroline Westrup, Florida State, 79-73-74 — 226 +10.

LSU Scores
2. Melissa Eaton 73-66-72 — 211 -5
T8. Rebecca Kuhn 72-75-71 — 218 +2
T8. Caroline Martens 75-71-72 — 218 +2
T13. Alexis Rather 74-73-74 — 221 +5
T30. Kim Meck 80-76-71 — 227 +11
T36. Vicky Meyer 79-76-73 — 228 +12
T58. Nicola Eaton 80-79-75 — 234 +18
T71. Rebecca Struthers 79-84-75 — 238 +22
98. Heather Hoffman 86-87-92 — 265 +49