Gamecocks Drop Matches to Alabama, Virginia
Sept. 7, 2009
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - South Carolina's women's golf team ran into a pair of tough opponents on Monday as they dropped both first- and second-round matches to Virginia and Alabama, respectively, at the Hooters/NGCA Collegiate Match Play Championship. The Gamecocks lost to Virginia 2-1 with two matches halved and to Alabama 3-1 with one match halved at LPGA International Legends Course.
The Gamecocks, as the No. 2 seed following Monday's stroke play qualifying, faced seventh-seeded Virginia in the morning match and kept things tight throughout. In the No. 1 match, sophomore Katie Burnett trailed UVA's Brittany Altomare for a good portion of the match as Altomare was 2-up through 10 holes. But Burnett would win two straight holes to square the match, and it would stay there through their 16th hole (the match started on Hole No. 9). Altomare won the 17th to go dormie 1, but Burnett would respond with a big birdie at the final hole to earn a halve in the match.
Taylor Barrett would also halve her match with Virginia's Eleana Collins. Starting on No. 7, Collins went 2-up after two holes. But Barrett would square the match through five holes and even take the lead two holes later. The match would go back and forth until Barrett squared the match at the 4th hole, where it would stay for the final two holes.
Freshman Meredith Swanson would get South Carolina's only win of the five, and she would do it with little resistance from Virginia's Nicole Agnello. Swanson never trailed in the match, winning four straight holes on the back nine to take the match, 5 and 3. However, Corrine Carr and Amanda Strang would come up just short in their matches to Calle Nielson and Whitney Neuhauser, respectively. Strang fought back from a three-hole deficit to square the match with two to play, but Neuhauser won the 17th and halved the 18th to take the match, 1-up. Carr led early, but fell behind at the turn and never caught back up, dropping the match 2 and 1.
In the afternoon session, Carr was dominant in her match with Alabama's Courtney Harter, ending things quite early with a 7 and 6 victory. But it was not to be for the rest of the Gamecocks as three of the other four matches went Alabama's way - with none of the three going the full 18 holes - and the remaining match resulting in a halve for Benedicte Toumpsin and Rhea Nair. Swanson lost to Brooke Pancake 4 and 3, Strang fell to Jennifer Kirby 4 and 3, and Burnett dropped her match to Camilla Lennarth, 2 and 1.
South Carolina will face Chattanooga in the match for seventh place on Tuesday morning. Live scoring is available through golfstat.com.