RIVERSIDE, Calif. – CSU Bakersfield’s women’s golf team stormed out of the clubhouse to post excellent results in the final round of play at UC Riverside’s Battle at the Rock on Tuesday. The Roadrunners were just a few strokes off of the school record for 18-hole team score while junior Tori Peers came up just one stroke short of tying the CSUB record for single-round score.
“I feel like we played a lot closer to our potential today,” said Meghan Thomason, CSUB’s Director of Golf. “Our goal was to slow it down and be more diligent with our visualization. As a result, our execution was the best I’ve seen this season and the team played with more confidence. We let a few opportunities slip away at the end of the round, but overall, I’m happy with the team’s performance today.”
The ‘Runners got Tuesday’s final round off to a great start and put together an impressive performance on the front nine. Both freshman Macey Mills and Peers were at just one-over-par through nine holes behind a birdie and two bogeys each. Ariel Lee was just one shot back at two-over while Julia Stewart’s five-over rounded out the CSUB scoring four. At that point in the tournament, only five of the 14 teams had a team score better than CSUB’s collective nine-over-par.
With back-to-back birdies on 10 and 11, Peers lowered her score to one-under through 14 holes. The native of Grand Island, Neb. double bogeyed on the 17th and her chances at CSUB’s single-round record were gone, but Peers finished well to card a 74 (+2), the second-best 18-hole score of her career and second-best all-time for the ‘Runners.
Lee, a junior from Singapore, was just two strokes behind Peers with a 76 on Tuesday. Mills came into the clubhouse with a 78 while Stewart, a Bakersfield native, rounded out CSUB’s scoring four with an 80. After contributing to the team score in both rounds on Day 1, Chandler Bullman’s 85 was dropped in Round 3.
On the 54-hole tournament, Peers paced the ‘Runners again with a score of 235 (+19). The score is tied for seventh-best all-time for the ‘Runners and ranked Peers 43rd overall out of 84 student-athletes. Lee was close behind at 237 while Bullman (246) and Mills (247) were just one stroke apart. Stewart improved over each round to post a three-round total of 251.
As a team, the ‘Runners improved each round and their total score of 958 (329-321-308, +94) is tied for fourth best in program history. The final round 308 (+20) is tied for second-best all-time. While CSUB finished in 15th place, only six of the 15 teams posted a better final round than the ‘Runners. Cal Poly took the team title (903) while Northern Arizona’s Sofia Anokhina won the individual medal by five strokes (216).
After the tournament in Riverside, Thomason said that she has high hopes for her squad in the weeks to come: “Tori and Ariel were solid and Macey has solidified herself as a major contributor to the team. I’m looking forward to some more great golf from this group.”
The ‘Runners will have the next few weeks off before returning to action at the Fresno State Classic, Mar. 13-14. The two-day tournament will take place in Fresno at San Joaquin Country Club.