CLE ELUM, Wash. — Nishtha Madan posted a team-best seven birdies and finished the opening round of the NCAA Cle Elum Regional at 1-under par to lead the Sacramento State Women's Golf team on Monday at Tumble Creek Golf Course. The Hornets shot 302 during the round and are in 15th place.
Madan is tied for 15th place overall and also tied for the most birdies during the round along with her playing partner Ana Laura Collado of UCF. She started play with two pars before carding her first birdie on the par-4 third. A double-bogey on the par-5 fourth was followed by a birdie on the par-4 fifth hole. Madan then bogeyed her next two holes but made the turn at 1-over with a birdie on the par-5 eighth and a par on No. 9. The junior played the back nine at 2-under par with the help of birdies on the par-4 10th and 12th holes which bracketed a bogey on the par-3 11th. She moved to 1-under with a birdie on the par-5 15th but gave a stroke back after a par putt on the par-3 17th lipped out. She closed by birdying the par-5 18th.
As a team, the Hornets had to overcome a tough start which saw the team's five golfers play the first hole at a combined 8-over par. The five finished the front nine at 20-over but showed significant improvement on the back side of the course where they combined for an eagle and eight birdies to finish at 2-over.
Julia Becker ranked second on the team with a round of 75. Becker was 1-over on the front nine with a bogey on the par-4 first and par-5 fourth as well as a birdie on the par-4 third. She ended her round by parring 13 of her final 14 holes with the exception being a double bogey on the par-3 11th which left her 2-over on the back nine.
Freshman Sydney Smith was the first off the tee in the morning and finished at 77. Smith had five bogeys on the front side of the course before playing her final nine holes at even par. Smith started the back nine with five pars and then birdied the par-5 15th. She later bogeyed the par-3 17th.
Corinne Viden completed the team score with a roller-coaster round of 79. The sophomore placed herself in a deep hole with a quadruple bogey on the first hole and a bogey on No. 2. She made the turn at 7-over after consecutive bogeys on Nos. 6 and 7. Viden began to turn things around on the back nine where she was even. After four pars, she birdied the par-5 14th and par-4 16th. However, after a par, she ended her day with a double bogey on the par-5 18th.
Sofie Babic rounded out the lineup with an 80. Babic also encountered early trouble with a double bogey on the first hole and four additional bogeys over a five-hole stretch. Her lone birdie of the round came on the par-5 eighth but was immediately followed by a bogey on the par-4 ninth. The junior double bogeyed the par-3 11th to take her to 8-over but she made those strokes back with an eagle on the par-5 15th. That eagle was one of just four during the day in the tournament. Babic finished with bogeys on Nos. 16 and 18.
USC, which is the top-ranked team in the country, totaled 281 to take a three-stroke lead in the team standings. Northwestern (284), Washington (285) and Arkansas (287) were the only other teams to finish below par. The top six teams after the third round will advance to the NCAA Championship.
Sacramento State will be paired with Miami and Iowa State in the second round. The teams will tee off the 10th hole between 9:30-10:10 a.m.
NCAA CLE ELUM REGIONAL
Cle Elum, Wash. | Tumble Creek GC
Par 72 | 6,306 Yards
1. USC (1) - 281
2. Northwestern (16) - 284
3. Washington (19) - 285
4. Arkansas (8) - 287
5. San Jose State (29) - 289
6. UCF (49) - 290
T7. Oregon State (36) - 293
T7. Ohio State - 293
T7. Old Dominion (40) - 293
10. Oregon (26) - 295
11. San Diego State (47) - 296
12. South Carolina (9) - 298
T13. Iowa State (43) - 299
T13. Miami (23) - 299
15. SACRAMENTO STATE - 302
16. Boston - 307
17. New Mexico State - 321
18. Southern Illinois - 322
( ) - National rank
INDIVIDUAL TOP FIVE
1. Ana Laura Collado, UCF, 66
2. Kathleen Scavo, ORE, 67
T3. Stephanie Lau, NW, 68
T3. Rino Sasaki, UW, 68
T5. Marisa Fassi, ARK, 69
T5. Gabriela Ruffels, USC, 69
T5. Yukie Sasaki, OSU, 69
SACRAMENTO STATE SCORES
T15. Nishtha Madan 71
T46. Julia Becker 75
T64. Sydney Smith 77
T80. Corinne Viden 79
T84. Sofie Babic 80
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