WG in third place at NCAA East Regional
May 7, 2009
Vanderbilt was one of the first teams to tee off this morning and the early morning tee time suited the Commodores just fine as freshmen Marina Alex and Andrea Messer each posted a one-under par 69 to put Vanderbilt in third place after the first day of play at the NCAA East Regional in Gainesville, Fla. Alex and Messer are in a tie for third on the individual leaderboard heading into the second round on Friday.
The Commodores, who posted a first round score of 286(+6), trail East Carolina, the leader after the first round, by three strokes, and second-place Alabama by only one stroke.
Vanderbilt, making its 10th consecutive NCAA Regional appearance, teed off at 7:40 a.m. EST with Georgia and Tennessee off of the first hole, and found themselves near the top of the leaderboard early with a combined score of five-over par on the front nine. On the final nine holes of the first round, the Commodores were even better, and after posting a collective total of one-over par on the back nine, Vanderbilt was in third place after morning play concluded. By the time the last afternoon groups had finished their 18 holes, VU remained in third place behind ECU and Alabama.
Alex, the team's leading scorer this year, posted three birdies and two bogeys in her round today, while Messer, one of the team's steadier players all season, had four birdies and three bogeys. Junior Brooke Goodwin played her final nine holes at even par and posted a one-over, 71, to account for the Commodores' third score, and senior Jacqui Concolino, who won the NCAA Central Regional as a sophomore in 2007, continued the strong finishing trend, ending her final seven holes at even par, and entered the clubhouse with a 77.
"They played great today," said Vanderbilt head coach Greg Allen. "The freshmen really played well today, and so did Brooke. And Jacqui played like the Jacqui of old, and finished strong. We put ourselves in good position, and that's all we can ask for. I told them that our job was not to just advance, that we had the talent to win this thing."
Individually, Alex and Messer trail only the East Carolina tandem of Abby Bools and Ana Maria Puche, who ended the first round at two-under par. Five other golfers are at one-under with the Vanderbilt duo.
The Commodores will once again be paired with the Bulldogs and Volunteers for Friday's second round. Vanderbilt is slated to tee off from the tenth tee of the 6,023-yard, par 70 Mark Bostick Golf Course at 11:50 a.m. Eastern time.
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