Senior Seul Ki Park notched her eighth career top-five finish after tying for third at the Samford Intercollegiate.
March 18, 2008
ONEONTA, Ala. - The Orange and Blue golfers tallied a final round 317 to finish tied with Missouri State for fourth place at the Samford Intercollegiate. The Illini carded the ninth-lowest 54-hole total in school history with a 915 at the par-72 5,808-yard Limestone Springs Golf Course.
"It has been good start to the season with a win and a tie for fourth place," second-year coach Renee Slone said. "Everybody learned a few things today and can take something positive away from the tournament."
Senior Seul Ki Park led the Illini on the final day with a one-under 71. She improved on each round (76-73-71), finishing tied for third with a four-over 220. Park notched the eighth top-five finish of her career and her first career third place finish. Her 54-hole total of 220 tied the ninth-lowest tournament score in school history. Park now holds four of the top 10 tournament totals in the Illinois record book.
"Seul Ki hit a lot of greens today and kept her approach shots on the correct side of the hole," Slone said. "She slowed down her swing, which really helped her."
Senior Kristine Cook (74-69-80) carded a final round 80 to finish in sixth place with a career-best tournament total of 223, seven strokes better than her previous low (230) set at last week's Gainesville Shootout III. Cook also notched her best finish since she won the 2005 Illini Spring Classic.
Freshman Raquel Hopton (80-72-84) turned in a final round 84 to finish with a total of 236 and tied for 39th with senior Stephanie Mory (77-77-82), who tallied a final round 82. Senior Kristin Kallergis (81-86-84) recorded a final round 84 to finish tied for 67th with a total of 251. Junior Nancy Featherstone (86-83-81) competed as an individual and finished one stroke ahead of Kallergis with a total of 250, tying her for 66th.
Emma deGroot (72-71-68) of Tennessee-Chattanooga earned medalist honors with a five-under 211, six strokes better than Michaela Cavener (217) of Tulsa.
Tulsa (884) won the tournament, finishing 17 strokes ahead of Tennessee-Chattanooga (901). Jacksonville State (913) finished in third place, only two strokes ahead of Illinois (915) and Missouri State (915).
"We'll learn from today and keep practicing, so we will be well-prepared for our home tournament," Slone said. "We will continue to work hard and move forward."
The Illini wrap up their spring break trip by playing some of the top courses in Alabama and Georgia before returning home. Illinois returns to action in two weeks when it hosts the Illini Spring Classic from April 4-5 at the Stone Creek Golf Club in Urbana, Ill.
FINAL TEAM LEADERBOARD 1. Tulsa 290-291-303 - 884 2. Tennessee-Chattanooga 300-303-298 - 901 3. Jacksonville State 306-296-311 - 913 T4. ILLINOIS 307-291-317 - 915 T4. Missouri State 307-306-302 - 915 6. Murray State 295-304-318 - 917 T7. Bradley 310-303-317 - 930 T7. Samford 317-305-308 - 930 9. Belmont 315-298-323 - 936 10. South Alabama 316-310-316 - 942 T11. UAB 317-316-316 - 949 T11. Birmingham Southern 322-309-318 - 949 13. Western Kentucky 329-310-327 - 966 14. Xavier 331-318-321 - 970 15. Lipscomb 336-314-345 - 995
FINAL ILLINOIS RESULTS T3. Seul Ki Park 76-73-71 - 220 (+4) 6. Kristine Cook 74-69-80 - 223 (+7) T39. Raquel Hopton 80-72-84 - 236 (+20) T39. Stephanie Mory 77-77-82 - 236 (+20) T67. Kristin Kallergis 81-86-84 - 251 (+35) T66. Nancy Featherstone (ind.) 86-83-81 - 250 (+34)