Bulldog Women Tee Off Season With Solid First Day Monday
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Gonzaga University's women's golf team opened the season with a strong showing Monday during the first two rounds of the Oregon State Invitational at Trysting Tree Golf Club.
The Bulldogs are in third place with a 36-hole total of 595, four strokes behind Washington State University, with only four strokes separating the Bulldogs from sixth-place and West Coast Conference foe University of San Francisco. The University of Idaho is fourth at 596, host Oregon State University is fifth at 597 and USF is sixth at 599. The University of Washington has a commanding 26-stroke lead over WSU and is 30 shots ahead of the Bulldogs with 18 holes to play.
Senior Victoria Fallgren began her final season with a 71-74 for 145 over the 6,141-yard, par 72 course to tie her for ninth. Freshman Raychelle Santos had a pair of 74's for a 148 and a tie for 16th and sophomore Alice Kim shot 72-78 for 150 and a tie for 23rd. Senior Genavive 'Genna' Dodge was at 154 and in a tie for 44th after a pair of 77's and junior Tai Jade 'TJ' Kliebphipat was at 157 with rounds of 81-76 and a tie for 58th.
Sophomore Han Wu is playing as an individual and was at 152 (72-80) and tied for 33rd.
Fallgren, who started on the 13th hole in the shotgun start, bogeyed her first and fourth holes but also had back-to-back birdies on a pair of par 5's, the 472-yard 14th and 466-yard 15th. She played par golf until a bogey on the first hole, but finished with birdies on the sixth and eighth holes to end at 1-under par. In her second round she was 1-under after a birdie on the 18th, then had a rough front nine with bogeys on one, three, four and seven and birdies on six and the 450-yard, par 5 ninth hole. She was 3-under for the day on the par 5's.
"It was a good first day. I was happy with the first round of 294 even though I felt we let it get away from us a little bit," head coach Brad Rickel said. "It was 90 degrees, no wind and the course was running hard and fast."
Rickel thinks the heat may have been as a much of a factor as the course in the second round.
"I think we might have run out of gas a little bit. The heat at the end of the day between 3 and 4 o'clock was intense. Even though it seems the second round got away from us a little bit a 300 isn't that bad. But it doesn't feel like it's as good as we could have done."
Rickel said Fallgren was in control most of the day.
"Victoria was solid from the get go and in control all day. She had some bogeys but kept throwing birdies back," Rickel noted.
Rickel was also impressed with the play of Santos.
"Santos' first two rounds were controlled. She seldom put herself in bad position. I was impressed with her first day of collegiate golf," Rickel said. "Everybody threw in a good round today. All-in-all it was a good first day and a good team effort."
Heading into Tuesday's final round, the Bulldogs find themselves right where they want to be in every tournament.
"We're happy to be in final group on the final day," Rickel said. "I know the Huskies have a big lead, but being in the final group is what we're shooting to do this year all the time. We have a lot of teams right behind us so we can't detract from what we're doing."