ST. GEORGE, Utah (Mar. 18) - The New Mexico State University women's golf team concluded the first two rounds of play at the BYU at Entrada Classic on Monday with a total-team score of 56-over-par 632 (318-314). The Aggies will head into Tuesday's final round in 11th place.
NM State began the day by shooting a 30-over-par 318 during round one in the morning. The Aggies started the second round in a tie for ninth, and although they improved on their first-round score by shooting a 26-over-par 314 in round two, they still fell a couple of spots to 11th place.
Individually, the highlight of the day for the Aggies came when freshman Kacey Dalpes sank her second eagle of the season during the first round. Her eagle came on the par-4 seventh hole, which was Dalpes 16th hole of the round. Her first eagle of the season came during the final round of the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown hosted by UNLV (Oct. 23, 2012).
Dalpes' eagle, however, was just part of what turned out to be a very productive day for the Aggies in terms of converting opportunities. Along with the eagle, NM State, as a team, also converted a total of 17 birdies during the first two rounds. Each of the five Aggie golfers had at least two birdies on the day.
NM State is used to having a freshman among the top 20 leaders, but after two rounds in Utah it is Viviana Macias, not Dalpes, who leads the Aggie team on the leader board.
Macias shot her best round as an Aggie, a 3-over-par 75, during round one of play. Her three birdies during the round matched the number of birdies she had after two full tournaments played as an Aggie. She entered the second round in a tie for 10th place.
Macias added a couple more birdies during the second round, finishing the round at 6-over-par 78. She will enter the final round on Tuesday in a tie for the 16th spot with a total score of 9-over-par 153 (75-78).
The rest of the NM State squad spent most of Monday within one or two shots of each other. The foursome was separated by three shots after round one, and will enter the final round separated by only one shot.
Senior Aileen Meredith finished the first round in a tie for 51st after shooting a 9-over-par 81. She then proceeded to sink four birdies during round two to move up to a tie for 47th place with a total score of 16-over-par 160 (81-79).
Dalpes, junior Amelie Buhl and sophomore Paige Darwin are all one shot behind Meredith and in a tie for 52nd place with a total two-round score of 17-over-par 161.
Along with her eagle, Dalpes (80-81) also added three birdies on the day. Buhl (82-79) had two birdies during round one while Darwin (83-78) had her two birdies during round two. The two birdies helped Darwin shoot her best round of the season, a 6-over-par 78.
Overall, host BYU started off strong by shooting the best round of the day, a 4-over-par 292, during round one. The Cougars held a four-shot lead over Wisconsin, a Top 50 team according to golfstat.com rankings, heading into the afternoon round.
While Wisconsin continued its good play in round two, however, BYU fell apart shooting a 27-over-par 315, 23 strokes above what it had shot in round one. The Badgers, who sit at 13-over-par 589 (296-293), will now enter the final round with a commanding 11-stroke lead over fellow Big 10 school Minnesota who will go into the final round on Tuesday at 24-over-par 600 (304-296).
Much like the team competition, BYU was on top of the individual leader board after the first round, but struggled during the afternoon round.
Cougar Lea Garner was the leader after round one, shooting a tournament-best 3-under-par 69. She went into the second round with a two-shot lead over Wisconsin's Kris Yoo and three shots ahead of Wisconsin's Kimberly Dinh and fellow Cougar Amanda Keith who finished at even par 72.
Like her team, however, Garner could not match her first-round performance during round two and will head into Tuesday's final round in a tie for ninth. Dinh heads into Tuesday atop the leader board with a 2-under-par 142 (72-70), one shot ahead of her teammate Yoo who finished the first two rounds at 1-under 143 (71-72). Three golfers are tied for third at 3-over 147.
The final 18 holes of the Entrada Classic will be played Tuesday beginning with an 8:30 a.m. (MDT) shotgun start. Remember to log on to NMStateSports.com for a recap of the tournament along with final Aggie team and individual results, or log on to golfstat.com beginning Tuesday morning to follow the action live with live scoring.