The Valparaiso University women’s golf team enjoyed a strong first day at the F&M Bank Austin Peay State University Intercollegiate in Clarksville, Tenn. on Monday. Entering the tournament’s third and final round, Valpo is in the top five among participating teams, while senior Kayla Krueger (Spring Lake, Mich. / Spring Lake) has put herself in position to try to close out a Top 10 finish.
How It Happened
- Krueger leads the way with a 152 through two rounds. She tied for the team lead in the opening round with a 77 before owning that distinction outright in Round 2 by improving to a 75 (+3). Krueger is ninth in the 51-player field that features nine participating teams.
- Freshman Cailey Rooker (St. Joseph, Mich. / St. Joseph) tied for the team lead in the opening round with a 77. She followed with an 89 in the second round to finish that day at 166 (t-36).
- Sophomore Payton Hodson (Middleton, Wis. / Middleton) had a strong day, improving upon her 80 from Round 1 with a 76 in Round 2. She is tied for 15th among all participants with a 156.
- Senior Tiffany Curtis (Crown Point, Ind. / Crown Point) was one of three Valpo players to go sub-80 in Round 1 by carding a 79. She is tied for 32nd through one day with a 164.
- All five players in the Valpo lineup enjoyed a round of under 80 on Monday. Sophomore Morgan Kier (Brownsburg, Ind. / Brownsburg) had hers in the afternoon round with a 78, a 10-stroke improvement from her first 18. She is at 166 through 36, which puts her at t-36 along with Rooker.
- Valpo carded a 313 as a team in Round 1 and followed with a 314 in the afternoon on a consistent day for the Brown & Gold. The team score of 627 puts head coach Jill McCoy’s group fifth of nine with a 13-stroke edge on sixth-place North Alabama. Tennessee Tech stands in fourth at 613.
- IUPUI is atop the team leaderboard with a 599, while Amelie Svejda of the Jaguars is in position for the medalist spot with a 144.
Inside the Round
- Krueger equaled her season and career-best with her 75 in Round 2. She previously carded a 75 in Round 2 of the Loyola Fall Invitational this season and Round 1 of the 2018 MVC Championship.
- The senior wasn’t the only one to match a career-low on Monday. Hodson’s 18-hole score of 76 was identical to a personal best that she had accomplished twice previously.
- Kier made her season debut on Monday. Her single-round score of 78 was three strokes better than her previous career-best.
- Valpo’s best play came on Par 3 holes, where the team’s 3.22 average (+11) was third-best in the nine-team field.
- The team knocked in 99 pars, tying for the second-most among participants. Hodson accounted for 23 pars.
- Valpo produced 11 birdies on Day 1, led by Krueger and Rooker with three apiece.
Thoughts from Head Coach Jill McCoy
“Kayla played solid golf today and led the team to a good first round. Payton and Morgan had a great second round to help put us in a good position as a team. I’m excited to see what we can do tomorrow. As long as everyone keeps their cool and plays smart, I think we can have an even better third round.”
The Austin Peay Fall Invitational will continue on Tuesday with the final round set to take place. Live scoring will be available via GolfStat with the link posted on ValpoAthletics.com.