Women’s golf will battle rivals and course in South regional

Women’s golf will battle rivals and course in South regional

SAINT LEO, Fla. – Saint Leo women's golf won't just be taking on 11 rivals when they head out to Marcus Pointe Golf Club in Pensacola, Fla., for Monday's opening round of the 2016 NCAA Division II South Super Regional.

They will be taking on a golf course that posed a serious challenge for the Lions when they played it almost exactly a month ago in the Univ. of West Florida Argonaut Invitational, which served as a regional preview event. Saint Leo finished eighth out of 18 teams in the Argonaut Invitational, led by sophomore Amanda Jakobsson's 15-over 231 that was good enough to place her 11th overall.

However the Lions learned from that experience, said Saint Leo head coach Tommy Baker.

"I think we need to do a better job of positioning the ball on the green, and keeping it below the hole," said Baker. "That means making better decisions on club selection in the tee box."

Marcus Pointe is nowhere near the Gulf coast and its barrier islands, meaning there is little water on the course and much less ocean breeze on the course. But it does have some narrow fairways and keeping the ball in play becomes the larger challenge.

Helping Saint Leo's cause in the regional will be the play of junior Marie Coors, who did not play at the Argonaut Invitational while awaiting a final medical assessment of her surgically repaired wrist. She received a clean bill of health the week after the UWF tournament, and promptly went out and took medalist honors at the Sunshine State Conference Championship the following week.

The SSC's head coaches acknowledged that, when healthy, Coors is a player in a class of her own, and named her the conference's Co-Player of the Year on Friday.

Jakobsson, sophomore Vilde Eriksen, and junior Sabrina Rumbaugh should be able to take advantage of their previous playing experience at Marcus Pointe, and will certainly head into the NCAA super regional with more confidence. All three posted single rounds in the mid-70s during the Argonaut Invitational, and will need to perform at that level consistently if the Lions want to earn their first team berth in the NCAA national championship in six tries.

Rounding out the Saint Leo team in Pensacola will be freshman Margine Arguello. Arguello played just four rounds while averaging 82.75 strokes this season, but has been striking the ball well in practice according to Baker.

The Lions, seeded seventh in the South Super Regional and placed seventh in the GolfStat relative rankings, will have to play better than their seed to make their first trip to the national championship. The top three teams advance to nationals on May 18-22 in Aurora, Colo., and five teams ranked higher than Saint Leo by GolfStat will play in the South Super Regional.

For Saint Leo, that journey to Aurora begins off the No. 10 on Monday morning at 8:40 a.m.

For more information on the Saint Leo women's golf program, visit SaintLeoLions.com.  Fans can also stay up-to-date on the latest Lions news by following Saint Leo Athletics on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and YouTube.