Yellowjacket women finish well in Arizona - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Yellowjacket women finish well in Arizona

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Led by a 2-over-par 74 by freshman Kortney McNeil, the Montana State University Billings women’s golf team finished Round 2 of the Western New Mexico Invitational in 15th place on Saturday at Palm Valley Golf Club.

The Yellowjackets totaled a score of 627 (312-315) in the two-day event on the par-72, 5,900-yard course layout. “This tournament was a good start for our women’s team,” commented MSUB head coach Kevin Woodin. “Everyone played very well for the majority of the tournament. However, we need to improve our consistency as a few bad holes definitely hurt. Both Coach Rhett Hightower and myself are very optimistic for the rest of the spring, and know that our players will work hard so we can be at our best for the GNAC Championships in late April.”

McNeil finished the event tied for 38th place, as she saved five strokes on her second time through the course and shot a two-round total of 153 (79-74). Junior Haley Shackelford was right behind McNeil on Day 2, showing vast improvement with a 3-over-par 75 after an 84 on Day 1 for a total of 159.

Sammy Walter finished tied for 71st with a 160 (78-82), Bailee Dexter was tied for 78th with a 161 (77-84), and Anna DeMars rounded out the field for MSUB in a tie for 91st with a 164 (78-86). Freshman Shealyn Hafer finished in 115th place, as she carded a 173 (85-88) competing as an individual.

After shooting five birdies on Day 1 of the event Friday, McNeil added two more to her scorecard on Saturday as she finished the event with the second-most birdies among the 120-player field with seven. McNeil had a string of nine straight holes at par or better, as she played 8-through-16 at 1-under par.

Shackelford’s highly improved game on Saturday came thanks to three birdies, and nothing above a bogey on her scorecard in the second round. Shackelford tied her career-low round score, as she also notched a 75 as a sophomore last season.

Walter carded four birdies in the second round, checking in just short of McNeil’s seven on the tournament with six of her own. Walter saved one of her strokes after a nice tee shot on the par-3, 120-yard 17th hole, and sunk the birdie putt. She then followed with a birdie on the par-5, 445-yard 18th hole in Round 2.

Dexter finished with eight pars on the day, while DeMars was close behind with seven. Hafer made par on four of her holes.

A four-way tie for first place featured Casey Wild and Isabell Jimenez Perea from Tarleton State, Marvi Monsalve from Cal Baptist, and Marisa Toivonen from Augustana University as each player finished with a score of 142. The two stellar performances from Wild and Jimenez Perea led Tarleton State to the team title, as the team finished with a two-round total of 579 (285-294) to defeat second-place Northeastern State by 11 strokes.

Also competing in the event from the Great Northwest Athletic Conference were Western Washington University (609, 9th place), and Saint Martin’s University (613, 12th place).

THE BUZZ: McNeil has finished with a two-round score of 153 or below in six of her seven rounds in the 2015-16 season…McNeil earned St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Day honors…Shackelford’s 159 was the second-best performance of her season…MSUB’s team total of 627 was the 10th-best single-event score in program history.

COMING UP: The ‘Jackets will compete in an event in Goodyear hosted by Montana State University on April 11-12 at the Golf Club of Estrella.

2016 Western New Mexico University Invitational – Final Result

Palm Valley Golf Club | Goodyear, AZ | April 2, 2016

Team – 1. Tarleton State, 579 (285-294); 15. MSU Billings, 627 (312-315).

Individual – T1. Casey Wild, Tarleton State, 142 (71-71); T1. Isabell Jimenez Perea, Tarleton State, 142 (71-71); T1. Marvi Monsalve, Cal Baptist, 142 (70-72); T1. Marisa Toivonen, Augustana, 142 (68-74); T38. Kortney McNeil, MSUB, 153 (79-74); T65. Haley Shackelford, MSUB, 159 (84-75); T71. Sammy Walter, MSUB, 160 (78-82); T78. Bailee Dexter, MSUB, 161 (77-84); T91. Anna DeMars, MSUB, 164 (78-86); 115. Shealyn Hafer, MSUB, 173 (85-88).

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