Clemson, S.C.—Ana Paula Valdes, Sydney Legacy and Kennedy Swann all had rounds of two under par 70 to lead Clemson to a five-under-par team score of 283 in the second round of the UCF Challenge at Eagle Creek Golf Club near Orlando, Fla. on Monday. Clemson improved from seventh to fourth with the performance on the par 72 course. The final round of the 17-team tournament will be Tuesday.
Mississippi State shot 13-under par 275 on Monday and has the team lead with a 560 total for 54 holes. Miami (FL) is second at nine under par 567. Host school UCF is third at 568, just one shot ahead of the Tigers. Clemson is ahead of seven schools ranked ahead of the Tigers in the latest Golfstat rankings. The list of teams behind Clemson after two rounds includes #10 Kent State (574) and #17 Texas (572).
“We really had it going today,” said Head Coach Kelley Hester. “The conditions were good for scoring and we tallied lots of birdies. We did have a few hiccups, but recovered nicely. It was good to see three players under par, especially with Alice struggling a bit. I think that is an indicator of what this team is capable of.”
Clemson’s five-under-par team score was the second best score vs. par in Clemson history. Only a six under par 282 in the Cougar Classic in 2013, the second round in school history, is better. The seven-under-par score through two rounds is also the second best in school history. The Tigers were nine under through two rounds at the 2013 Cougar Classic.
Valdes had four birdies on Monday and nine over the first two rounds. She stands in a tie for 11th place at three-under par 141 after two rounds. Her round Monday was her best of the season and it marks the first time she has had consecutive under par rounds to open a tournament.
Legacy was one of the most improved players in the field of 96 players with her two under par 70 after a six-over-par 78 on Sunday. The junior had five birdie and three bogeys in the second round.
Swann, who just entered Clemson in January, had her second straight round at par or better. After an opening 72, the freshman from Austin, Texas had four birdies and a double bogey to record her 70. She is in a tie for 21st place entering the final round with a 142 total.
Alice Hewson had an opening round 68, but slumped to a 73 in the second round. She had three birdies and four bogeys on Monday, but is still in a tie for 11th place individually with a 141 score.
Senior Jessica Hoang had a solid round of 73 as well on Monday. She had five birdies, but had a triple bogey seven on the third hole that cost her the first under par round of her season.
Marisa Messana is playing as an individual. She was even par on the front side and shot three over on the back to finish with her second straight 75.
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