Muscle Shoals, AL – Battling through a blustery day, the Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s golf team was able to put together a second-round 305 and stay atop the leaderboard at the Ohio Valley Conference Women’s Golf Championship, Monday, at The Fighting Joe course at The Shoals on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail.
“Today was a battle,” said head coach Jessica Combs. “The weather throughout most of the morning was brutal, but each girl played extremely well through it. As a team, we had one bad hole that cost us a handful of shots, but I think it’s important to focus on the other 17 good holes we did have. We are in a solid spot heading into the final round, and we know what it’s going to take to come away with the championship.”
After a tough first round, Shelby Darnell rallied to lead the Governors with a three-over 74 on the second day. The senior from Madisonville, Kentucky carded one of Austin Peay’s two birdies in the second round and climbed 11 spots on the leaderboard, she is tied for 12th with a score of 154. Darnell has carded 26 pars through 36 holes, which is the second-best mark in the tournament.
Freshman Erica Scutt used the Govs’ other birdie to put together a four-over 75 in the final pairing on the course. The Alpharetta, Georgia product has sole possession of the third place in the tournament with a score of 146 and is just five shots behind Murray State’s Payton Carter, who leads the field.
Riley Cooper shot a six-over 78 at the par-72, 5,969-yard track and is tied for ninth in the field with a two-round score of 153. Cooper has parred 24 holes – which is tied for the third-most in the tournament – and is even par on the par fives through 36 holes, which is also tied for the third-best mark in the field.
For the second-straight day, the final counting score for Austin Peay came from Taylor Dedmen, who posted a six-over 78. Dedmen pared 13 holes – including the final three of the round – and is tied for 12th in the tournament with an aggregate score of 154.
Freshman Kaley Campbell battled her way to a second-round 86 and is now tied for 22nd with a two-round score of 159.
“Each girl had some hiccups that cost them strokes, but that’s golf,” said Combs. “We need to make more birdies tomorrow to combat the bogies, but we are confident that we’ll find them out there. Shelby bounced back with such a good round, just like I knew she would, and I’m so happy for her.”
Through 36 holes, the APSU Govs lead the tournament with 120 pars on the challenging Fighting Joe Course. Belmont’s 114 pars are the second-best mark in the tournament, with Morehead State’s 104 rounding out the top three. Austin Peay State University also leads the field in par-four scoring (+17), where it is two shots better than Belmont.
As the tournament leaders, Austin Peay State University will be paired with Belmont and Morehead State in the final five pairings of the second round. Set to tee off at 9:22am, Campbell will lead the Governors off the first tee, Tuesday, followed by Dedmen, Darnell, Cooper, and Scutt, respectively. GolfStat.com will have live scoring for the event.