Four Shot Improvement Moves WPU Up Standings

William Penn Women's Athletics

William Penn Women’s Athletics

Lincoln, Neb.–The Statesmen women’s golf team was one of only a few squads to shoot lower on the second day at the NAIA Women’s Golf National Championships Wednesday.

William Penn posted a 327 (+39 over par) to advance into a tie for 14th out of 27 teams at the par-72 Wilderness Ridge Golf Course. The program’s current total is 658 (331-327).

#1 SCAD Savannah (Ga.) took over the lead from defending national champion and #2 Oklahoma City by shooting 304 for the second day in a row for a two-round tally of 608 (304-304). Oklahoma City is three strokes back at 611 (302-309).

Daniela Martinez of Northwood (Texas) is the new individual leader of the 144-person field at two-over 146 (72-74).

The field will have new pairings for Thursday’s third round. The Statesmen will be paired with Cal State-San Marcos and St. Andrews (N.C.); WPU is tied with St. Andrews, while CSU-SM is four strokes ahead at 654. The group’s first tee time is 8 a.m. on Hole #1.

The top 17 teams and top 40 individuals after the third round will make the cut into the fourth and final round.

William Penn tied for the 14th-best round on Wednesday and was one of only ten teams to shoot as well or better than it did Tuesday. The navy and gold’s four-stroke improvement tied for the fifth-biggest margin of the day.

For the second day in a row, the five Statesmen linksters were separated by only five strokes. Demi Coertze (So., Johannesburg, South Africa, Digital Communication) headlined the group with an 80 and is now tied for 50th at 162 (82-80).

Maggie Yang (Jr., Chino, Calif., Business Management) posted an 81 and is currently topping WPU in a tie for 44th at 161 (80-81), while Alexandria Eckenrod (Jr., Mason City, Iowa, Elementary Education) and her 82 moved her into a tie for 72nd at 167 (85-82).

Jing Yang (Fr., Woodland Hills, Calif., Biology) is now tied for 77th at 168 after another 84 (84-84). Courtney Cunningham (Fr., Muskogee, Okla., Computer Science) again recorded an 85 and currently sits in a time for 88th at 170 (85-85).

On an unforgiving course that gave away only two Statesmen birdies–one each by Coertze and Jing Yang–WPU started very well (+15 in its first nine holes), but had a few more issues down the stretch (+24 in its last nine holes).

“Conditions were much tougher, but we still performed better than we did on the first day,” Head Coach Nik Rule said. “We are on the verge of going low and we hope that tomorrow is the day. We just need to play WPU Golf and we will make the cut, allowing us to compete for the title on the final day.”

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