Women's Golf Poised for MAC Championships This Weekend
HAMILTON, Ohio ? Marshall will participate in its third and final Mid-American Conference Women?s Golf Championships, hosted by Ball State University, at Walden Ponds Golf Club this weekend beginning with the first of three rounds on Friday at 8 a.m.
The up-and-coming Marshall program is one of nine teams that will contend for the 2005 title. The field includes Ball State, Bowling Green, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Marshall, Northern Illinois, Ohio, Toledo and Western Michigan.
Walden Ponds Golf Club is an upscale, 18-hole championship course designed by Michael Hurdzan that will host its sixth consecutive MAC Championships. This weekend it will play as a 5,870-yard, par-72 course. Rounds 1-3 will begin each day at 8 a.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Herd head coach Meredith Knight will send five MU golfers to the tees this weekend, including the season?s leading player, Amber Churchill (Dublin, Ohio). The sophomore paces Marshall with a 77.71 stroke average per round, a number that rose due to her last 18 holes, a season-high 91, in the final round of the Lady Buckeye Spring Invitational last weekend. Conversely, her best score came in the spring?s opening round, at the East/West Rio Verde Invitational on March 3, with an even par 71.
Churchill, who finished in an 11th place tie at the ?04 MAC Championships, will be joined at this year?s event by several fellow sophomores in teammates Allyson Hatcher (Wheeling, W.Va.), Tammy Mahar (Ashland, Ky.) and Stacy Wagner (Harmony, Pa.) along with freshman Whitney Wolejko (Hatfield, Mass.).
Hatcher, last season?s MAC Freshman of the Year, tied for eighth at the 2004 MAC Championships with a three-round score of 231, 16 strokes behind medalist Gabby Wedding of Kent State. She has played only five rounds this spring due to injury, but managed to finish one stroke behind Churchill in Columbus last weekend.
Thru 18 holes at last season?s championships, Hatcher was 1-over with a 73. As a team, the Herd finished in fifth place (968) as Kent State (902) won its sixth title in as many years that the MAC Women?s Golf Championships have been held. Western Michigan was 18 strokes behind the Golden Flashes for second place in 2004, the closest any team has come to knocking off KSU.
Wolejko is coming off shooting the best round of her spring season, an 8-over 80 at the Lady Buckeye, and is the lone Marshall competitor to be playing in her first conference championship.
Results of the 2005 MAC Championships can be found daily on HerdZone.com.