April 17, 2008
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -
The University of Wyoming women's golf team got off to a solid start on Thursday at the 2008 Mountain West Conference Women's Golf Championship in Albuquerque. In cold and windy spring conditions, the Cowgirls shot a first round score of 319 (+27) and are in the middle of the pack, fourth of seven teams.
On their home course, the New Mexico Lobos carded a round of 298 (+6) and hold a nine-stroke lead over BYU, who sits second at 307 (+15). UNLV is third with 308 (+16), followed by Wyoming (319), TCU and Colorado State (324) tied for fifth, while San Diego State is seventh (326).
Individually, defending champion Jodi Ewart of UNM, shot a one-under par 72 to take the first-round lead. UNLV's Therese Koelbaek sits one stroke behind Ewart in second place with even-par 73. Wyoming sophomore Jonelle Martinez, BYU's Natalia Jimenez and the Lobos' Britney Choy are all tied for third place at 74 (+1).
The one-over par scorecard by New Mexico native Martinez (Santa Fe) ties her career best mark set just last week at the Cowgirl Classic. Her initial round of the Championship included two birdies, 13 pars and three bogeys.
Round two will be played Friday morning and then the championship will conclude with 18 holes on Saturday, tee times beginning at 8:30 a.m. (MT) each day.
Wyoming will be grouped with the defending champion TCU Horned Frogs during the second round and their first pairing tees off at 9:20 a.m. Colorado State will be paired with San Diego State and will begin first, while BYU, New Mexico and UNLV will form the final group.
"There were some tough holes to begin with, however this team hung in there today," said Cowgirl head coach Josey Stender. "It's tough to tell how the weather affects other teams, but we were prepared for bad weather today. We knew we could put up some decent rounds despite it and we adjusted as the round went. Our slow start was probably due to a combination of nerves, cold and wind, but our back nine scores were much better.
"It's nice to be playing with the defending champions tomorrow and we have a good start time. The pin placements will no doubt be more difficult tomorrow and we are expecting wind again, but each player on our team feels like they can improve.
"Jonelle played very well today and I'm proud of her. She came in with a lot of confidence on this course and it showed in her decision making."
Since each team plays five golfers and counts the top four scores, Wyoming counted scorecards from Martinez, an 80 (+7) from sophomore Sarah Fogerty, 82 (+9) from senior Laura Mengelkamp and 83 (+10) from senior Lindsay Bauknecht. Fogerty is tied for 18th place and led the team with three birdies during her round. Cowgirl senior Kaelee Aegerter had a very difficult start to her round, but rebounded late and turned in a mark of 86 (+13).
The three-day, 54-hole event is being played at the University of New Mexico's Championship Course, which is par 73 and measures 6,167 yards.
The MWC is providing live stats for the Championship. You can find the live stats link on the MWC Golf Championship webpage at www.TheMWC.com. Simply click the golf championship link to track all the action. You can also go directly to GolfStat.com to find the live stat link.