Baylor women keep rolling with a fifth straight victory
Baylor Women's Golf (Baylor Athletics)
Women’s college golf’s biggest question right now is simple. Will Baylor ever lose?
The answer to that question will have to wait for another week as the Lady Bears mauled the competition yet again, for a Big 12 record fifth consecutive team title at the ICON Invitational hosted by the Golf Club of Houston in Humble, Texas.
However, this win was a little harder to come by than the others. Golfstat’s No. 1 ranked team began the day tied for the lead at 12-under with No. 4 LSU. Lurking behind the pair was No. 9 Oklahoma State at 6-under and No. 19 TCU at 3-under.
Baylor counted two players inside the top five to begin the day as freshman Britta Snyder sat in a tie for second, two shots off of the lead. Classmate Rosie Belsham was hot on her tail at five under through 36 holes.
As Snyder and Belsham competed for the lead, finishing third and tied for fifth, respectively, the rest of the Bears went to work. Senior Elodie Chaplet wrapped the event up with a 3-under 69 for a T-19 finish while junior Gurleen Kaur and freshman Hannah Karg matched 70s for top-30 finishes. All five starters for Baylor scored under par for a team total 276 and event total 840, a school record relative to par.
If anything could be spoiled for the Bears so far this season, their streak of sweeping team and medalist honors is now over. Oklahoma State freshman Rina Tatematsu picked up her first collegiate win against a stout field.
Tatematsu’s name was atop the leaderboard through 36 holes but had world No. 5 Ingrid Linblad (LSU) and Houston’s Karen Fredgaard right alongside her at 8-under. Competing as an individual, Tatematsu’s scores did not count towards the Cowgirls’ team score which may now have coach Greg Robertson scratching his head. Had Tatematsu been in the Oklahoma State lineup, Baylor’s reign would have been over as the Cowgirls would have edged the Bears by a single stroke.
After an opening 2-under 70, Tatematsu caught fire as she posted back to back 66s to claim the individual title. The separation was aided by Linblad’s final round 73 (7th/-7) while Fredgaard could not get as much out of her round as Tatematsu, settling for a 3-under 69 and solo second place (-11).
Baylor will head east to take part in the Gamecock Invitational March 1-3 while Oklahoma State will head west to play in the Arizona Wildcat Invitational March 8-9.
ABOUT THE ICON Invitational
54-hole women's college tournament hosted by the
University of Houston. Team (best four scores out of
five players) and individual competitions.
View Complete Tournament Information