April 17, 2009
SEASIDE, Calif. -
University of Wyoming junior Jonelle Martinez kept the pressure on the rest of the Mountain West Conference Championship field on Friday as she finished the second round atop the 35-person field at the Black Horse Golf Course in Seaside, Calif.
Martinez, who led after day one, maintained her lead with her second round 75 (+3) ahead of Jodi Ewart of New Mexico, the 2008 Individual Champion, by two strokes. Martinez has the chance to become the first MWC Champion for UW in women's golf since Jordan Lintz did it in 2000, the first year of the MWC. The highest finish by a Cowgirl since Lintz was Mikala Henzlik in 2006 when she placed fourth.
The Cowgirls as a team slipped from their fifth-place spot after round one to sixth after two rounds with one round to play. New Mexico still leads the tournament with their two-round total of 598 (+22) strokes, while TCU and BYU trail with their total of 607 (+31) and 618 (+42), respectively. The rest of the field is as follows; UNLV 620 (+44), Colorado State 621 (+45), Wyoming 626 (+50) and San Diego State rounding out the field with their 627 (+51) second-day total.
"The course played quite a bit tougher today as the hole locations were in some tricky positions," said UW head coach Josey Stender. "Jonelle had a couple hiccups on the front nine, but told herself that she just needed to pick up two holes on the back nine and she would be alright."
That's exactly what Martinez did, as she ended the front nine five-over par, but played perfect golf on the back nine. She had seven pars and got her two birdies to end her day three-over par.
Sophomore Molly Black and freshman Juanita Rico followed Martinez for the Cowgirls as they are both in a tie for 23rd-place with their two round totals of 159 (+15). Junior Sarah Fogerty and sophomore Jenna Zamprelli round out the field for the Cowgirls in 30th and 35th places respectively.
"Jenna (Zamprelli) played better today except for a couple of holes that she struggled at, while Juanita hit the ball well, but just didn't have her putting today," said Stender. "We have a chance to make history tomorrow; we just have to play better from top to bottom. It's really exciting to be in this position. To be playing in such a tough conference that is nationally ranked and it is really showing how this team has grown and improved in the past few years."
The Cowgirls will be paired with San Diego State tomorrow starting at 8:30 a.m. (MST) for the final round of the MWC Championships. Live results can be followed at www.themwc.com.