GREENSBORO, N.C. - The Duke women's golf team opened the 2011 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) women's golf championship on Friday with a 13-over-par, 297, and sits eight strokes back with 36 holes remaining at the Par 71, 6,185-yard Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C.
North Carolina opened the championship with a five-over-par, 289, and holds a six stroke lead over Virginia (295) and Florida State (295), while Wake Forest (296), Duke (297), Maryland (298), Miami (302), N.C. State (311) and Boston College (314) round out the field.
The Blue Devils were holding around the top three on the leaderboard until 12:40 p.m., when Duke took its first lead of the afternoon by one stroke. Shortly after taking the lead, the Blue Devils expanded it to three strokes before dropping 19 strokes over holes nine, 10 and 11. Duke had two triple-bogeys and three double-bogeys to go along with six bogeys.
Duke regrouped and closed strong with four birdies on the 445-yard, par five 15th and four birdies on the closing hole, the 470-yard, par five 18th.
"It was great to see -- I wasn't surprised," Head Coach Dan Brooks said on the eight birdies on the 15th and 18th holes. "It didn't look to good for us early, but I knew we had 15 and 18 coming in and we have some good ball-strikers. I had a feeling we might make up some ground there and we sure did. They hung tough. I have to hand it to them. They didn't get upset. There are a lot of things that happen to you on these green complexes that can get you down and they just didn't get down. I was real happy with that."
Blue Devil sophomore Lindy Duncan carded a team-best two-over-par, 73, on Friday and is tied for seventh, individually. A product of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Duncan opened with two birdies, two bogeys and five pars on the front nine. On the 170-yard, par three third hole, Duncan hit a 5-iron to within three feet for her first of four birdies on the day.
"It was an interesting day," said Duncan. "I hit the ball really well but my putting speed was off all day. It was really frustrating because it could have been a really good round. I finished well, near the top of the leaderboard, but it was a struggle."
After Duncan made the turn, she double-bogeyed the 10th hole and then had bogeys on the 12th and 13th holes before closing with birdies on the 15th and 18th holes. The reigning ACC Player of the Year was on in two on the par five 15th and 18th holes. She hit nine fairways, 13 greens and had 34 putts on the day.
"We have to play a bit smarter on this course," commented Duncan. "There are a lot of tricky shots out there -- I thought I lost a couple of shots just because I made mistakes not knowing what side to miss it on."
North Carolina's Allie White owns the individual lead with a five-under-par, 66, which is one shy of the ACC Championship record. Cheyenne Woods of Wake Forest is second at one-under-par, 70.
Senior Kim Donovan didn't have the start to her fourth ACC Championship she wanted as she opened bogey, par and triple-bogey, but she regained her composure to play the final 15 holes at one-under-par. Donovan, who is from Hopkinton, Mass., netted her first birdie of the day on the 160-yard, par three seventh hole as she drained a 45-foot putt. She was unlucky on the ninth hole as her ball moved after addressing the putt and was forced to take a bogey due to a penalty stroke.
Donovan made her second straight bogey on the 10th hole before closing with a two-under-par ledger over the last eight holes. She was on in two on the par five 15th and made a birdie. Then she made a three-foot putt on the 18th to finish with a 74. She is tied for 12th overall as she hit 14 greens, 11 fairways and had 33 putts.
"The course is beautiful and its in wonderful condition so putts are rolling pretty well," said Donovan. "If you are on the dance floor you can definitely make them or roll a few in. With ball-striking, it can be difficult out there."
Turning in a team-best six birdies on the day was sophomore Stacey Kim, who finished with a three-over-par, 74, and is also tied for 12th. She kicked off her round with a par on the first hole but then hit her second tee shot out of bounds and took a seven on the second. Kim came right back and birdied the third and fourth holes with five and seven foot putts, respectively, to get back to one-over-par.
Kim, a product of Columbus, Ga., had a bogey on No. 6, but once again registered back-to-back birdies on the seventh and eighth holes with 11 and 10 foot birdie putts, respectively, to get back to even par. Another out of bounds tee shot on the ninth forced her to take a seven as she made the turn at three-over-par.
On the final nine holes, Kim turned in two birdies on the 15th and 18th holes to go along with two bogeys and five pars. For the day, she hit 10 greens, eight fairways and had a team-best 28 putts. Kim's six birdies in the round is a season-best and matches a career high.
Playing in their first ACC Championship, freshmen Laetitia Beck and Alejandra Cangrejo opened strong in the front nine as they combined for a one-over-par score through seven holes, but struggled on holes 8-12 as they were a combined 12-over-par. Cangrejo, who is out of Bogota, Columbia, finished strong playing the final six holes at one-under-par as she birdied the 14th and 18th holes, while missing a birdie on the 15th with a lip-out. She finished the round with a 78 and is tied for 32nd.
Beck closed with a birdie on 15 and three consecutive pars to finish the day with a 76 and is tied for 21st. She hit 11 greens, nine fairways and had 32 putts on the day.
As a team, Duke registered 17 birdies, but had three double-bogeys and three triple-bogeys on the day as well.
"We need to do the same thing we have been doing -- stay patient," said Brooks. "It would be nice if we could eliminate some of the big numbers -- we had some doubles, a triple. If we can get that stuff out of there we are going to be fine."
Duke will tee off in the second round beginning at 8:30 a.m., along with Maryland and Wake Forest in a shotgun start. The area is expecting to have inclement weather coming in on Friday evening, which has changed the tee times in the second round.
- d - u - k - e -
1 Team Scores
1 North Carolina 289 +5
T2 Virginia 295 +11
T2 Florida State 295 +11
4 Wake Forest 296 +12
5 Duke 297 +13
6 Maryland 298 +14
7 Miami 302 +18
8 North Carolina State 311 +27
9 Boston College 314 +30
Start Finish Player Team Scores
- 1 Allie White North Carolina 66 -5
- 2 Cheyenne Woods Wake Forest 70 -1
- T3 Katherine Perry North Carolina 71 E
- T3 Jessie Hollandsworth Maryland 71 E
- T3 Natalie Sheary Wake Forest 71 E
- 6 Nicole Agnello Virginia 72 +1
- T7 Christina Hirano Miami 73 +2
- T7 Jessica Negron Florida State 73 +2
- T7 Macarena Silva Florida State 73 +2
- T7 Lindy Duncan Duke 73 +2
- T7 Brittany Altomare Virginia 73 +2
- T12 Amanda Baker North Carolina State 74 +3
- T12 Patricia Arana Miami 74 +3
- T12 Hannah Thomson Florida State 74 +3
- T12 Kim Donovan Duke 74 +3
- T12 Stacey Kim Duke 74 +3
- T12 Calle Nielson Virginia 74 +3
- T18 Hilary Lawson Maryland 75 +4
- T18 Maria Salinas Florida State 75 +4
- T18 Catherine O'Donnell North Carolina 75 +4
- T21 Carrie Barbee Boston College 76 +5
- T21 Ana Menendez North Carolina State 76 +5
- T21 Maria Ronderos Miami 76 +5
- T21 Hayley Brown Maryland 76 +5
- T21 Christine Shimel Maryland 76 +5
- T21 Portland Rosen Virginia 76 +5
- T21 Laetitia Beck Duke 76 +5
- T28 Kaela Klune Boston College 77 +6
- T28 Jackie Chang North Carolina 77 +6
- T28 Casey Grice North Carolina 77 +6
- T28 Michelle Shin Wake Forest 77 +6
- T32 Brittany Marchand North Carolina State 78 +7
- T32 O. Kristinsdottir Wake Forest 78 +7
- T32 Eleana Collins Virginia 78 +7
- T32 Aleja Cangrejo Duke 78 +7
- T36 Jennifer Hirano Miami 79 +8
- T36 Alexandra Bodemann Wake Forest 79 +8
- 38 Kelsey Rockey Boston College 80 +9
- T39 Stephanie Hu Boston College 81 +10
- T39 Eunice Yim Boston College 81 +10
- T39 Andrea Kaelin Florida State 81 +10
- 42 Kerri Connolly Maryland 82 +11
- T43 Caroline Ellington North Carolina State 83 +12
- T43 Brooke Baker North Carolina State 83 +12
- 45 Carina Cuculiza Miami 85 +14