Story by Mallory Tucker, Staff writer
Women’s golf finished fifth in a field of eight at the Austin Peay Intercollegiate in Clarksville, Tennessee, on Oct. 13. Rounds of 322 and 325 totaled the Racers at 647, 28 strokes behind tournament champion Austin Peay.
“They were disappointed, extremely disappointed, in how they played,” said Head Coach Velvet Milkman. “Which is a good sign – they care. It’s a different golf course and we just didn’t handle it very well. You have to be very patient on that golf course, and we weren’t. I don’t know exactly why we didn’t perform; however I know we have a lot of talent and we’re going to be fine. It’s just a bump in the road.”
Freshman Jane Watts led the Racers in individual scores with rounds of 76-80=156 for a 12th place finish.
Just a week earlier at the UC Bearcats Fall Classic in Mainville, Ohio, Watts tied for the second-best scores amongst the Racers, and Milkman said Watts was definitely a positive in a tournament of unexpected results this week.
“It’s really exciting for a freshman to do that,” Milkman said. “She’s getting so much better, and that’s fun to watch. So as I said, there’s positives; it just hasn’t come together yet.”
Sophomore Moa Folk finished at 17th for the Racers and senior Sydney Trimble took spot 20 on the leaderboard. Sophomore Anna Moore took 26th place, and seniors Abbi Stamper and Sophie Hillier rounded out team play at 29th and 35th, respectively.
“I thought the tournament was a good learning experience for us,” Milkman said. “We didn’t play to our potential, and at times you learn more when you don’t play to your potential. I think the girls really learned a lot of things, and we’re going to work on those things and move on positively.”
The Racers will end their fall season Tuesday at the Middle Tennessee Invitational in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Milkman hopes to see anywhere from three to five OVC teams, but is also excited to face other talented mid-major programs as they put the Austin Peay Intercollegiate behind them.
“We need to end on a positive note, there’s no doubt,” Milkman said. “We don’t want to end like we did at Austin Peay, because that’s just not fun – to end on a negative note. We’re going to work extremely hard up through the tournament, and I really feel like we will. We’re not that far away from putting it all together.”