Benita, Melgrati Pace Wildcats to Open NCAA Regionals
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The Wildcat tandem of Maya Benita and Carolina Melgrtai both carded opening rounds of 1-under par to pace Arizona Women's Golf to sixth place at 5-over par on the opening day of NCAA Regionals. The pair of top-10 scores on the first day of the NCAA Regional highlighted a steady round that included 60 pars, which was second most among the field.
"We came out and played well today that set a great tone to begin the week," said head coach Laura Ianello. "Maya and Carolina played some of their best golf as Wildcats, which was fantastic to see on the opening day of NCAA Regionals. I feel good about where we are on the leaderboard going into Tuesday, and I am confident we will post another strong round and move up."
Benita was dominant on the course's longest holes, finishing tied for second out of 65 players in par-5 scoring at 3-under for the day. Melgrati led Arizona in par-3 and par-4 scoring that included back-to-back birdies on a pair of par 4's on the fifth and sixth holes.
The Benita-Melgrati duo sit in a tie for eighth after Monday's round and are followed by freshman Lilas Pinthier who sits in a tie for 21st at 2-over. Pinthier's round was a symbol of steady golf after making par on her first 12 consecutive holes. Junior Gile Bite Starkute also had an impressive streak of pars as well, making par on each of her nine holes after the turn.
Arizona enters Tuesday's second round in sixth at 5-over and a stroke behind TCU and Georgia. Oregon leads all teams at 4-under with Texas (1-under) and Florida (even) just behind the Ducks. The Wildcats will tee off with Georgia and TCU at 7 a.m. (MST) on Tuesday, beginning on the first hole.