Women’s golf seventh halfway through NCAA Championships

May 22, 2014, 12:30 a.m.

After 36 holes of play at the Tulsa Country Club, the Stanford women’s golf squad sits in seventh place in the 24-team field. Anne Walker’s quintet markedly improved on its Tuesday performance, bettering its score by 14 strokes, from a 20-over 300 to 6-over 286 on Wednesday — a resurgence spurred by the excellent play of sophomore Mariah Stackhouse.

Sophomore Lauren Kim (above)
Sophomore Lauren Kim (above) has impressed thus far at the NCAA championships at Tulsa Country Club, carding rounds of 67-71 to put herself in a tie for second. (NICK SALAZAR/The Stanford Daily)

Stackhouse, who placed T-29th in the individual standings at last season’s championships, lagged a bit in Tuesday’s first frame, bookending her round with consecutive bogeys en route to a 5-over 75. The Riverdale, Georgia native turned things around in a big way on the second 18, stringing together four straight birdies on holes 15-18 after starting her round on the par-4, 416-yard 10th hole. She wasn’t able to maintain her momentum on the back nine, however, where two bogeys dropped her score to a 1-under 69. Still, her solid second round lifted her into the top 20 and only three shots out of the top 10.

The real story for Stanford at the NCAA finals thus far has been Stackhouse’s classmate, Lauren Kim. Arguably the Card’s best player over the course of the spring season, this event may be the coming-out party Kim needs to vault her into the upper echelon of collegiate golfers. Her round one 3-under 67, which included birdies on three of the four par-3s, put her in a three-way tie for first in the individual standings. She fell back a fraction in the second round with a 1-over 71, but still signed an incredibly steady scorecard that showed 17 pars. After Wednesday, Kim finds herself in a tie for second, and only three strokes off the pace set by Oklahoma’s Alexandra Kaui.

But despite the excellent showings from their two stars, the Cardinal are currently in seventh place in the team race, eleven shots behind first-place Oklahoma. As has been an issue throughout the season, Walker’s unit has struggled with its depth thus far in the NCAA championships, and has not found a consistent scorer in the four slot.

Freshman Casey Danielson — who has played extremely well for Stanford during the spring portion of its schedule — showed her age in round one, limping to a 9-over 79. Junior Mariko Tumangan also carded a 79 on Tuesday, with senior Marissa Mar turning in an 82. Though those three improved their numbers in round two, the Card are going to need a lot more from the back end of their lineup in the second half of the tournament if they are to challenge for a podium spot.

Cameron Miller is a sports desk editor for The Stanford Daily's Vol. 246 and is the men's and women's golf writer. He also writes on NCAA-related matters. Cameron is also a Stanford student-athlete, competing on the cross country and track and field teams. He is originally from Bakersfield, California, but spends most of his time away from the Farm on the state's Central Coast. Contact him at [email protected].

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