Forsterling, Women's Golf in the Lead at Match in the Desert
TEMPE, Ariz. - Behind the performance of Alexandra Forsterling, Sun Devil Women's Golf is in the lead after one round at the Match in the Desert.
Arizona State got off to a fast start in the first event of the Spring, pacing the loaded Match in the Desert field with a 278 (-10). Alexandra Forsterling continues her excellent senior campaign, firing a career low 66 (-6), leading the 42-golfer field. Head Coach Missy Farr-Kaye's team is in position to compete for their third consecutive Match in the Desert title, with the final 18 holes played out tomorrow at Superstition Mountain Golf Club.
"I am extremely pleased with the way we played today," Coach Farr-Kaye remarked. "Even though we may be in the lead, I told the team we left some shots out there and need to finish strong tomorrow."
The Maroon & Gold's success can be traced to their approach on par four holes, finishing with the best scoring average (3.9) on such opportunities. ASU was responsible for the only two counting eagles of the day, both coming on the fifth hole. That was a lucrative hole for the Sun Devils, as they recorded three birdies and two eagles on five. Arizona State's 21 birdies are the second-most of any team in the field.
1 Arizona State 278 -10
2 Oklahoma State 281 -7
3 Denver 285 -3
4 UCLA 288 E
5 Ole Miss 289 +1
6 Arizona 295 +7
7 Kansas 298 +10
Forsterling avoided mistakes and took advantage of birdie opportunities, playing a clean front nine at three-under. She matched that on the back nine thanks to four birdies. Forsterling was excellent on par five opportunities, finishing with a 4.2 scoring average. She was equally as effective on par four chances, notching a 3.63 scoring average. Both figures were Top-2 in the field, a big reason why she sits in the lead after day one.
"I trusted my game and focused on having fun," Forsterling remarked. "When I stay positive and committed to my plan, things tend to work out well."
Five of the six Sun Devils are in the Top-10 after the first 18 holes, including freshman Grace Summerhays who was making her Sun Devil debut. Summerhays carded a 71 (-1) in her first collegiate round, earning a tie for 10th. Summerhays caught fire before making the turn, enjoying three birdies over a four-hole stretch. She finished with four total birdies and under par on both par four and five chances.
Joining Summerhays in the Top-10 was fellow freshman Calynne Rosholt, who was playing as an individual. Still eligible for the overall title, Rosholt is in firm contention, sitting just two strokes behind teammate Forsterling in a tie for third. Her 68 (-4) was the eighth time in her first 10 rounds as a Sun Devil she has finished at or below par. Rosholt was the best in the field on par four holes, finishing with a 3.50 scoring average. Rosholt recorded eight birdies, the most of any golf by two, including birdieing five of her first seven holes. She also finished strong with two birdies over her final three holes.
Ashley Menne put together a great run in the first round, carding a 70 (-2) to earn a tie for seventh. She sits just four strokes off the lead after an extremely consistent performance. She was one of two Sun Devils to record an eagle, building on that with a pair of birdies. Her 13 pars were the most on the team, remaining steady throughout the round.
Looking to build off an incredible stretch prior to the turn, Alessandra Fanali is the fifth Sun Devil in the Top-10. She was excellent starting with a birdie on the fifth hole, recording three birdies over a four-hole run. She finished with five total birdies and was one of the best in the field on par four holes, registering a 3.75 scoring average. Amanda Linner also enjoyed a stretch of three birdies in four holes, as she looks to duplicate her front nine play for the entirety fo the round tomorrow.
1 Alexandra Forsterling Arizona State 66 -6
2 Maddison Hinson-Tolchard Oklahoma State 67 -5
T3 Calynne Rosholt Arizona State 68 -4
T3 Chiara Tamburlini Ole Miss 68 -4
T5 Phisitkhwan Pooratanaopa Kansas, Univ. of 69 -3
T5 Anna Zanusso Denver 69 -3
T7 Ashley Menne Arizona State 70 -2
T7 Caroline Canales UCLA 70 -2
T7 Katarina Drocarova Denver 70 -2
T10 Alessandra Fanali Arizona State 71
T10 Grace Summerhays Arizona State 71 -1
The field will undergo a shotgun start tomorrow at 9:00 am, with the six Sun Devils teeing-off at different holes. Stay tuned for updates on where Arizona State will begin their rounds.
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