Earlier this week the women’s golf team came in fourth place at the Austin Peay State University Intercollegiate, falling in the middle of a pack of OVC teams the Racers will have to beat if they intend to win the OVC championship.
The Racers were bested by Jacksonville State University, Morehead State University and Southern Illinois University, putting them 30 strokes behind first place Jacksonville and just three strokes behind Southern Illinois. Though the team did beat out four other OVC teams in the field of ten, Head Coach Velvet Milkman feels that this tournament is more disappointment than win.
“We didn’t play to our potential, but I did see a lot of positives, and we’re going to try and build on those positives for our tournament next week at Middle Tennessee,” Milkman said. “I thought our ball striking was really good this week. We hit a lot of fairways and a lot of greens. We just didn’t convert those opportunities once we hit the greens. So we’ve got to really work on our short game this week, which is chipping and putting.”
Milkman went on to explain that though fourth place is not necessarily a bad finish, the team could have played better against its OVC counterparts.
“I’m disappointed because we didn’t play to our potential as a team,” Milkman said. “I think several players played to their potential and then some didn’t. I’m not completely disappointed in the whole tournament but I think we could have done better than fourth place, but that’s what we did.”
Senior golfer Alexanda Lennartsson, who lead the Racers at APSU said that she felt her team played well, though the results didn’t reflect it.
“First off, this course is really tough” Lennartsson The greens are crazy. So if you’re on the back side it can be really hard. I know everyone did their best, and I think our team played good, it just didn’t really show on the scores.”
Though the team didn’t perform well as a whole, there were individual successes, most notably Lennartsson, who finished in second place, with a score of 146. Senior Alli Weaver and freshman Sophie Hillier tied for 20th place with a score of 160. Junior Delaney Howson finished 25th.
“Alex played fantastic,” Milkman said. “She got second there and she was only one stroke out. She’s actually been fighting a shoulder injury and hadn’t played in three weeks and to do what she did this week shows a lot about her character and about her pride and I’m just very proud of her.”
Like her coach, Lennartsson was pleased and surprised at her performance coming off her injury.
“I’ve been injured for three weeks and I haven’t really touched a golf club,” Lennartsson said. “And to go out and shoot a 76 yesterday and a 72 today, I don’t really know what to say about it. I’m just so happy. I’m kind of speechless about it. I was just so happy to get to pick up a club again. I just tried to go out and play the best golf I could do.”
This Monday the Racers will be on the road once again, this time at Middle Tennessee State University for the Middle Tennessee Invitational, which features another difficult course and another shot at the OVC schools who so recently shut out the Racers.
“It’s a good tournament,” Milkman said. “We played there last year and that was the first time for the event. I know Jacksonville State will be there, Morehead will be there, Austin Peay, Belmont. We’re excited to go back and see the OVC schools and compete against them the way we know we can.”
Kyra Ledbetter, Staff Writer