APSU Sports Information
Batavia, OH – A rain-delayed final round conspired to add some strokes to Austin Peay State University women’s golf team’s final score, but the Governors grinded to a third-place finish in their fall opener at the NKU Fall Classic.
Austin Peay’s final-round 308 gave the Govs a 921 (311-302-308) for the 54-hole event, leaving them three shots behind runner-up Oakland. UNC Asheville (305-301-308=914) won by four strokes, with Dayton (305-302-316=923) and Morehead State (321-313-313=947) rounding out the top-five.
“We were so close, we had to finish strong and we lost seven or eight shots over the final few holes,” said head coach Sara Robson. “And even then, made some amazing up and downs to keep it there. But I am proud of their fight today in tough, crummy conditions. They were determined, but the rain delay got us out of our rhythm and we were never able to get it back.”
In addition to opening the season with a third-place finish, Austin Peay outpaced the rest of its Ohio Valley Conference competition. Morehead State finished 26 shots behind the Governors, with Tennessee Tech (sixth, 949), Belmont (tied for ninth, 960) and Illinois State (13th, 1006) below the Governors in the opening tournament of the 2017-18 campaign.
The Governors tied for the tournament lead in par-3 (3.22) and par-5 (5.20) scoring, securing their best season-opening finish since finishing third at the Chris Banister Classic to kick off the 2013 campaign.
An even-par front nine helped offset a seven-over back nine for junior Ashton Goodley, who enjoyed her first top-10 finish since the 2017 Saluki Invitational—she finished sixth with a 227 (77-72-78).
A trio of Governors narrowly missed achieving top-10 showings. Taylor Goodley finished 13th with a 233 (74-78-81), two shots out of a top-10 spot, with senior AnnaMichelle Moore (77-76-81) and freshman Riley Cooper (83-76-75) one shot behind Goodley. Cooper’s tie for 18th makes her the first Governor with a top-20 finish in her Austin Peay debut since Amber Bosworth (10th), Morgan Garnder (13th) and Morgan Kauffman (18th) each placed in the top-20 to start their careers in 2013.
Cooper and sophomore Meghann Stamps were the low Govs on the day, with Stamps’ final-round 74 not only the best by a Governor but the fourth-lowest final-round showing in the tournament. She finished 49th (84-90-74), while Cooper’s 4.78 average on par-5 holes equaled Ashton Goodley for the tournament’s best performance.
“Riley and Meghann fought hard and made some great up-and-downs,” Robson said. “We’re very proud of those two. Riley had a great first tournament and Meghann had a great comeback from yesterday.”
“The fight and grit those girls showed in that weather is a great example of their mental toughness,” Robson said. “We’ve got to quit taking so many three-putts and while the short game is always a work in progress, our chipping helped us this week. We’ve got a great team and this year will be exciting.”
Austin Peay returns to action next week at the Cardinal Classic, hosted by Ball State at the Players Club in Yorktown, Indiana.