Fans of the women’s golf team only had one chance to see the team play at home this season, and the Hoosiers made sure not to disappoint.
The Hoosiers dominated the IU Invitational, and won the tournament with a team score of 884 (+20) at the IU Golf Course on Sunday. IU finished 15 strokes ahead of second-place finisher Toledo for the team’s first tournament victory of the season.
IU Coach Clint Wallman said the tournament went well, not only because the team finished first in the standings but also because of the team’s mindset throughout the weekend.
“To me it was much more about the process and the way they went about their business,” Wallman said. “The golf course played really tough with the green speeds and especially the wind so it looked to me like they had a much different focus in terms of how they played and how they played the golf course, and they did just a really good job.”
Junior Alix Kong won her first tournament as a Hoosier with a three-round score of 214 (-2). Kong shot the best individual round of the tournament with a 70 (-2) in the first round.
Kong said it felt great to win the tournament in Bloomington with the support of her teammates and also said she feels good about her game heading into the final tournament of the season before the Big Ten.
“I think it’s really important for me to just try my best to finish strong,” Kong said. “I was really patient out there, and I kept myself really happy, so I think that played a key role, and I’m just going to take that into the next two tournaments and just enjoy the time with my team.”
Kong was one of four Hoosiers to finish in the top 10, and all five IU golfers finished in the top 20. Erin Harper finished fourth with a 5-over-par 221, including a 72 (E) in the second round.
Senior Theresa-Ann Jedra and freshman Emma Fisher finished tied for eighth place with a three-round score of 225 (+9). Senior Ana Sanjuan finished tied for 17th with a score of 229 (+13) to round out the team for the Hoosiers.
Wallman said Fisher is a big-time athlete and also said he has enjoyed watching her improve and mature as the season has progressed.
“She’s making better decisions, she’s hitting better quality shots and she’s blossoming into a really good player,” Wallman said. “I think she has a great future ahead of her. That’s a strong, strong contribution from a freshman.”
Wallman said the team did a good job avoiding compounding errors and also had a lot of birdies to balance out its mistakes. He also said the team was very target-focused and that focus was important on the course this weekend.
“I think that showed up in the final score,” Wallman said. “I think that was probably the main thing we did better than the rest of the field was just playing to good targets and when we had good opportunities, taking advantage of them.”
The Hoosiers will look to carry the momentum from their win into their next tournament, at the Lady Buckeye Invitational on Saturday and Sunday in Columbus, Ohio.
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