Iowa women's golf places 13th in New Mexico


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The Iowa women’s golf team finished in a tie for 13th place at this week’s Branch Law Firm/Dick McGuire Invitational. The event, which took place at the Championship Golf Course at the University of New Mexico, hosted 17 schools. Iowa’s effort was highlighted by Kristi Cardwell’s first career hole-in-one during Monday’s action.

“It was a great week for Kristi,” second-year head coach Megan Menzel said in a release. “She put together three solid rounds, and this was a very strong field, so finishing in the top 10 was a great accomplishment.”

Cardwell became the first player to record on ace under Menzel. She finished in a tie for ninth place among the 93 individuals who participated in the 54-hole event, posting a 220 (1 over) total.

Cardwell said Monday that her goal was to “finish in the top five” as an individual. She was not able to accomplish that, but she was able to post her best three rounds of her season in Albuquerque, carding a 72, 74, and 74.

“I thought I played really well,” Cardwell said. “In the second round, I had a few out-of-bounds struggles, but I finished really strong.”

As a team, the Hawkeyes finished at 919 (14 over). That total is 20 strokes lower than the number the Hawkeyes carded at last week’s Chip-N-Club Invitational in Lincoln, Neb.

“I was proud of our team for finishing the round well today,” Menzel said. “We put three better rounds together this week, and we’ll continue working hard to get better each week as the season progresses.”

Three Iowa women posted their lowest total of the tournament during the final round. Among the trio was Gigi DiGrazia, who tied her season-low total of 77 (4 over). DiGrazia bogeyed her first four holes of the day but did not score over par the rest of the round.

Lauren English, a sophomore from Bloomington, Ill., also carded her best round of the tournament on Tuesday. Her round was highlighted by two birdies on holes 7 and 9.

Sophomore Shelby Phillips was the other Hawkeye to post her best round of the tournament Tuesday. Phillips played consistently throughout her round, recording 14 pars on the day.

Iowa State secured the Dick McGuire Invitational title. Three teams (California-Davis, Nevada-Las Vegas, and Ohio State) finished 1 stroke behind the Cyclones. Iowa State was able to fight off the stiff competition in Albuquerque, thanks in part to Sasikarn On-Iam’s final round effort. She was (4 under) in her last 13 holes of the tournament.    

The Hawkeyes next scheduled event is the Hawkeye Alumni Challenge, which will take place Friday, Sept. 21 at Finkbine Golf Course. The fifth annual Hawkeye Golf Alumni Challenge will be held in conjunction with the men’s Alumni Challenge.

The format for the event will be a four-alum scrabble. Each alumni group will be paired with a current Iowa golfer or coach.

The Iowa women will return to tournament action on Oct. 1. They are scheduled to participate in the Johnie Imes Invitational in Columbia, Mo.

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