Event 6: Saluki Invitational
Hosted by: Southern Illinois
Location: Carbondale, Ill.
Course: Hickory Ridge Golf Course
Details: Par-72, Yardage – 6,017
Weather at Start of Round: Cloudy, 45
Place After Final Round: 10 of 14 (+101)
CARBONDALE, Ill. --- Weather caused changes to the format of the Saluki Invitational. The teams were forced to play 36 holes on Sunday, opposed to 18 holes on day one and a second round of 18 holes on Monday. Tennessee State got off to a slow start carding a 59-over, 347, during the morning session, but bounced back in the afternoon, cutting 17 strokes to finish with a 101-over, 677.
The Tigers placed 10th in the field of 14, finishing just ahead of crosstown foe, Lipscomb. IUPUI claimed the team title with a 41-over, 617. Southern Illinois’ Moyea Russell claimed the individual title with a 1-over, 145. Freshman Carson Racich was the top finisher for the Tigers in 12th place after firing a 12-over, 156.
Racich’s placing came without the benefit of a birdie in either round, as she finished the day with 25 pars, 12 in the first round, and 13 in the second. The first year saved par after finding trouble on several occasions.
On the par-4, 16th, Racich put her drive into the trees, but found an opening and used a 7-iron out of the mud to the front of the green. The Loves Park, Ill. native just missed the 35-foot lag before saving par. Racich continued in the second round on the par-5, 6th, by hitting her second shot into the gully in the ground under repair area. Racich chose to play as is, opposed to taking the drop. She hit a pitching wedge to the green, pin high, leaving eight feet to save par.
Morgan Rood, Haleigh Riley and Dhani McDowell joined Racich (79-77=156) in scoring in both rounds for the TSU. Savannah Szozda (97-92=189) just missed scoring for the squad in the first round by two strokes.
For the second consecutive week, McDowell (96-84=180) made the biggest jump from round-to-round. The freshman cut 12 strokes off her first round score to match her career best of an 84. McDowell recorded nine pars and a birdie in the second round, improving on her four par performance during the first 18 holes.
Rood (81-82=163) stayed consistent on the day as she made 14 pars and three birdies, while Riley (91-87=178) improved from three pars in the first round to six pars and a birdie in the second.
The Tigers will take a week off before returning to play at the Jan Weaver Invitational. The Murray State hosted event will consist of 36 holes on Apr. 6 and 18 holes on Apr. 7.
Leaderboard (83 Golfers)
1. Moyea Russell (Southern Illinois) 71-74=145, +1
12. Carson Racich 79-77=156, +12
T25. Morgan Rood 81-82=163, +19
60. Haleigh Riley 91-87=178, +34
T62. Dhani McDowell 96-84=180, +46
71. Savannah Szozda 97-92=189, +55