W Golf 8th After First Round in Tennessee

Sept. 26, 2008

TUCSON, Ariz. - The #17-ranked Arizona women’s golf team teed off the 2008-09 season at the Mason Rudolph Championships on Friday morning and finished the opening round of play in 8th place with a team score of +9 (297) at The Vanderbilt Legends Club in Franklin, Tenn.

The Wildcats sit 11 strokes off the lead, held at 2-under by Oklahoma State. UCLA is one shot behind the Cowgirls at 1-under while defending national champion USC shot even par.

Senior Amanda Wilson started her final collegiate season in style as she shares 6th place after carding a 1-under round of 71, shooting an impressive 2-under tally of 34 on the back side of the par-72, 6,262-yard course.

Sophomore Alejandra Llaneza posted identical 9-hole scores of +1 to finish the first of her three rounds with a score of +2 (74). Despite logging a bogey on her opening hole, Llaneza carded pars on each of the next six holes before rolling in her first of two birdies on the round on the 8th hole.

Junior Brittany Benvenuto finished one shot behind Llaneza as she sits in a share of 42nd place at +3 (75). Benvenuto started well with a birdie on the par-4 1st hole, but was unable to find another birdie until the 17th hole while sandwiching five bogeys in between.

Freshman Margarita Ramos had an up-and-down round for the Wildcats in her collegiate debut, finishing at +5 on the day at 77. She followed up a bogey on the 1st hole with a birdie, but then carded a double-bogey on the 4th hole. A birdie on the 6th helped her round out with a total of 37 on the front. However, a solo birdie on the 13th hole wasn’t able to match up against a trio of birdies and an unfortunate double-bogey on the last hole to post a 40 on the back side.

Rounding out the day for the Eagles was freshman Nikki Koller, who was making a bit of a homecoming in her first collegiate start. A native of nearby Lewisburg, Ky., Koller battled the nerves through her first six holes as she found herself seven shots over par. A pair of birdies on the 7th and 8th holes helped Koller find her game as she shot +3 on the back side to finish at 80 (+8).

Arizona continues its play in the tournament on Saturday morning with another 18 holes of play before wrapping up the 3-day event on Sunday morning. The field includes 9 of the top 10 ranked teams in the nation, including Pac-10 foes USC, Arizona State and UCLA.

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