Day 2 Recap: USC breaks record at NCAA women's golf championships

Thanks to a record-setting round, USC is all alone in first place after its first two rounds in the NCAA women's golf championships. The Pac-12 comprises four of the top seven on the team leaderboard, with UCLA fourth, Stanford tied for fifth and Arizona State in seventh in addition to USC holding down the No. 1 spot. Arizona is one of six teams that were unable to complete their second round because of two weather delays, so the Wildcats will finish up round No. 2 Thursday before embarking upon holes 37-54.


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How do you take first place all to yourself? You do this:

The only Pac-12 team to finish the round before the first weather delay (lasting two hours and five minutes), USC has the aforementioned 12-stroke lead over defending champion Alabama, which defeated USC by one stroke for the national championship last year.  There should be no raised eyebrows by now that Annie Park is a big reason why USC has a comfortable cushion, currently in second place and one stroke behind Alabama's Stephanie Meadow after tallying a 67 to get to 7-under for the tourney. She has SoCal company up top, too: teammates Rachel Morris and Sophia Popov posted red numbers Wednesday (70 apiece) to get into a tie for sixth at 3-under, while Kyung Kim shot 69 to climb to 1-under overall (tied for 15th). Check this out - there were just five bogeys combined from the four USC golfers whose scores counted today.


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The phrase "par for the course" is more than just a cliché for UCLA women's golf; it's what the Bruins are halfway home after a 287 (-1) Wednesday put a big "E" next to their name on the team leader board. As such, the Bruins have crept ahead of Purdue (the squad they were tied for fifth with Tuesday) and have fourth place all to themselves thanks to San Jose State's precipitous drop (the Spartans haven't finished, but they are currently 16-over on the second round). Lee Lopez had an extremely eventful round today, displaying a scorecard that reads 69 with seven birdies and four bogeys. She's now -2 for the tourney, good for a tie for 10th and one stroke behind teammate Erynne Lee, who birdied 18 to finish Wednesday with a 70. I wonder if these ladies will have the same post-round dessert tonight...

I'll take a chocolate/vanilla swirl, Coach Forsyth (maybe some peanut butter if they have that in stock, too).


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Hey Purdue, how'd ya like to be tied for fifth with another Pac-12 school? Try Stanford on for size! That's where the Card finds itself after shooting even par on the round. Mariah Stackhouse was on fire today, as the freshman who once shot 26 on a front nine (good feature on her by SI, by the way) finished with a 68 to move her up the player leader board 15 spots to fifth. Here's a look at her and head coach Anne Walker:

— Stanford W Golf (@StanfordWGolf) May 22, 2013

And with that, Mariah Stackhouse wins the award for best Twitter handle of any Pac-12 athlete. Mariko Tumangan is the Card's other under-par golfer so far after her 72 kept her at -1 through two rounds.


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The Forks have bettered their position by two spots after a 1-under 287 has 'em in seventh place. Arizona State was one of just four schools Wednesday to have a minus sign by their name for the round, doing so in large thanks to the work of Noemi Jimenez. The Spaniard played bogey-free golf to shoot 4-under on the round, bringing her tournament total to -3 (four-way tie for sixth, all Pac-12 golfers. While we're at it, six of the top nine golfers so far hail from the Conference of Champions). Laura Blanco also helped the Sun Devils' cause by carding a 70, overcoming bogeys on her first two holes to shoot 4-under the rest of the way. Arizona State was almost able to avoid the two-hour rain delay, but Melissa Luellen's group couldn't quite make it through in time:

If you clicked on the pic, you'd be as in love with the pink polos as I am.


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Oh so close to finishing the round. With four Wildcats already in the clubhouse, Andrea Vilarasau just needed to finish up No. 9 (her 18th hole) and the Wildcats could officially be 50 percent of the way through this thing. But, thanks to a lightning delay at 8 p.m. local time (5 p.m. out west), Vilarasau will have to complete her second round tomorrow. As of now, Arizona is tied for 15th with Texas at 18-over (the Longhorns are in). Of course, their two-round total is dependent upon how Vilarasau finishes, because she is currently the low Wildcat with a 1-over through 35 holes, shooting plus-1 on her 17 Wednesday. Kendall Prince did get in at 1-over, bringing her 36-hole total to 3-over. The other teams that were unable to finish are San Jose State, Northwestern, Michigan State, UC Davis and Auburn.


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So Oregon probably isn't going to be making much of a run  at +20 and 36 strokes behind Troy, but one Duck made a permanent mark on the 2013 NCAA women's golf championships:

 

That's pretty tight, obviously. The ace was part of an even-par day for the Penn State transfer, who was one-upped by Cassy Isagawa's 71. Isagawa is the Ducks' low woman for the tournament at 2-over, good for a tie for 28th. As a team, the Ducks shot six strokes better Wednesday and moved up three spots from tied for 20th to tied for 17th.


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Tied for 28th on the player leader board but first in individual golfers' hearts (and scores), lone ranger Ying Luo shot 74 Tuesday to bring her two-round total to +2. The Chinese native has a one-stroke lead over Tennessee's Erica Popson to top all six individual golfers who made the trip to Athens unattached.

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