LAKEWOOD RANCH, Fla. – Paced by a big second-round, the FGCU women’s golf team finished day one of the Mid-American Challenge in first place at the Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club on Monday afternoon. The Eagles were led by sophomore Sarah Edwards (Jay, Fla./Jay) who is currently in first and junior Sophia Warren (Lakewood Ranch, Fla./Seminole State College) who is tied for seventh among the five scoring players. As an individual, redshirt senior Ailsa Clark (Navarre, Fla./Navarre) sits in second going into Tuesday’s final round.
As a team, FGCU shot 295 in the first round before coming alive in the second round for a score of 283. The afternoon score tied for the program’s lowest 18-hole total in program history, while the 578 total is the 5th lowest 36-hole total.
“Today was a bit of a mixed bag, but that was to be expected with almost a year of not competing as a team,” said head coach Sarah Trew. “The first round you could tell we were rusty and did not play up to our standards. I’m really proud of how we bounced back the second round and played up to our capability. Sarah and Ailsa had tremendous individual efforts, while Sophia really hit the ball well and is on the verge of going low. We are excited to get back on the course tomorrow to showcase our best golf.”
Edwards leads the pack with a two-round total of 137 thanks to a four-under 68 in the morning session and a score of 69 in the afternoon. Clark also posted a 68 which tied with Edwards and Ahra Ko of Northern Illinois as the lowest individual round score on the day. Those scores were tied for the 4th lowest 18-round score in program history, while Edwards’ 137 and Clark’s 138 tied for the 2nd and 4th best 36-hole totals, respectively.
In addition to her 68 which came in the second round, Clark started off the day with a two-under par 70 to enter Tuesday’s action in second place (though as an individual, her score won’t count for the Eagles).
Warren posted a 144 on the day including a second round two-under 70 to finish tied for seventh. Senior Natalia Nassar (Bucaramanga, Colombia/Colegio Panamericano) had a 71 in the afternoon to clean up five strokes from her morning round to sit tied for 17th.
Junior Laura Edmonds (Buenos Aires, Argentina/Cypress Bay) and redshirt sophomore Haley Yerxa (Ottawa, Ontario/Hillcrest) are tied for 23rd (150) and 28th (151), respectively.
As a team, FGCU led the field with 30 birdies on the day highlighted by 10 from Edwards. Clark was just behind with nine followed by eight from Warren.
Tuesday’s final round will start at 8:26 AM for Edwards, Edmonds, and Nassar, while Warren, Yerxa, and Clark will tee off at 8:35 AM.
1 – Sarah Edwards – 68-69—137
2 – Ailsa Clark – 70-68—138
T7 – Sophia Warren – 74-70—144
T17 – Natalia Nassar – 76-71—147
T23 – Laura Edmonds – 77-73—150
T28 – Haley Yerxa – 77-74—151
2021 Mid-American Challenge Field:
1 – #73 FGCU – 295-283—578
2 – Northern Illinois – 291-289—580
T3- Illinois State – 299-286–585
T3 – Central Michigan – 294-291–585
5 – Akron – 293-294—587
6 – Ball State – 307-293—600
7 – Morehead State – 305-302—607
8 – Toledo – 308-300—608
9 – Ohio – 312-300—612
10 – Bowling Green – 312-304—616
11 – Western Illinois – 327-317—644
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Since taking over the program in 2011, Sarah Trew has guided the Eagles to 42 top-five finishes, including 30 over the past five seasons. On top of that, she led the program to a pair of second-place finishes in the ASUN Championship in 2016, 2017, and 2019, signifying the best finishes in program history. She was named the ASUN Coach of the Year in 2015-16 and has guided FGCU to some of its best statistical seasons in program history
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FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 82 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 13 seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just nine seasons of D-I postseason eligibility, the Eagles have had a combined 38 teams or individuals compete in NCAA championships. Seven FGCU programs have earned a top-25 national ranking in their respective sport – including women’s basketball (No. 24, 2019-20) and both men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s soccer (2018) as three of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Green and Blue posted a department-best sixth-place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top-100 showing nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and state of Florida best seven teams earn the NCAA’s Public Recognition Award for their Academic Progress Rate in their sport. FGCU also collectively earned a record 3.46 GPA in the classroom in the spring 2020 semester and has outperformed the general University undergraduate population for 22 consecutive semesters. The 2019 Fall and 2020 Spring semesters each saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a 3.0-or-higher team GPA. The Eagles also served an all-time high 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two runners-up for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.