CSUN women’s golf struggles at Ram Classic

The+finishers+for+CSUN+womens+golf+at+the+Colonel+Wollenberg+Ptarmigan+Ram+Classic.+All+of+the+players+scored+above+par+by+the+value+indicated.

Edward Segal

The finishers for CSUN women’s golf at the Colonel Wollenberg Ptarmigan Ram Classic. All of the players scored above par by the value indicated.

Alexis Martinez, Reporter

Struggles continued for the Matadors as the women’s golf team traveled to Fort Collins, Colorado, to play in the 2022 Colonel Wollenberg Ptarmigan Ram Classic, the second tournament of the season. The event lasted from Sept. 26-27 and was played in front of a stunning backdrop of tall mountains and flying clouds above.

In an 11-team field that included institutions like CSU Long Beach and UC Irvine, the Matadors shot 52-over with 916 strokes and finished last. The University of Nevada, Reno won the Ram Classic, striking for a 32-under with 832 strokes.

“It was a disappointing finish, especially since the course was set up really easy, but honestly, we had a lot of errant shots off the tee and into the greens, which was the main reason why we finished so poorly,” CSUN interim head coach Michelle Winkler said.

Freshman Gracie Piar back swung in the Ram Classic with an average of 75.33 strokes. Piar also collected four birdies, burying at least one each round. She started strong in the first round with a 1-over 73 and slowed down by the second round with 4-over 76 strokes.

Piar had a similar arc the next day, striking the ball for two birdies in the beginning, but slowing down to earn her highest score of the tournament at 5-over 77, landing her in 40th place.

“I put up some good numbers, but honestly, I didn’t play the best,” Piar said. “I couldn’t make any putts inside 12 feet and my tee balls were all over the place. My irons were the best they have ever been, so I was sticking everything anywhere from 6 to 15 feet, but unfortunately [I missed] the putts. The course was amazing and I’m glad I got the opportunity to play there.”

Sophomore Elle Laur procured a 75.67 average, starting the tournament cold but improving in each successive round. The first round proved to be forgettable as she whacked the ball in a 9-over 81 effort. However, Laur needed five fewer strokes to make it through round two.

The final round proved her best, as Laur pummeled the ball for six birdies to boot. Earning a 2-under 70 in the third round, Laur recovered from her day one struggles to move up to 41st place, where she tied a player from Bowling Green State University.

Sophomore Fernanda Sosa Stackpole drove the ball for a 77.67 average. She started the Ram Classic with a sluggish performance, finishing the first round 3-over 75 while collecting four birdies. Stackpole started her second set with 39 strokes in nine holes, but she rounded it out with a birdie, shooting a 6-over 78.

Stackpole did not improve in the final round, though she earned two more birdies in the last 18 holes. She closed out her performance with an 8-over 80. Her efforts were enough to claim 53rd place.

Freshman Kim Turgut jumped out to a great start through the first nine holes, pocketing three birdies. This was her best round, where she earned a 5-over 77. In the second and third rounds, Turgut stumbled for a 7-over and an 8-over, respectively. She labored to strike for an amassed average of 78.67, but racked up four birdies in the last two outings to put herself in 57th place.

Sophomore Julia Myklebust shot for an average of 7-over 79 strokes, struggling throughout the Ram Classic, but bashed the ball enough to score four birdies. Her endeavor on the course landed her tied with two others for 59th place.

Senior Grace Bettis represented CSUN in the individual competition, but an injury ended her tournament early. Bettis needed 74 strokes to complete the first round, but before she could finish round two, she strained a muscle on one of her swings. She played through the injury and took 85 strokes in the second, but Winkler held her out of round three.

“Her ball was in a divot, the rough, and [she] tweaked something in her back,” Winkler said. “While she was warming up for the third round she wasn’t swinging like she normally does. We thought it was best to pull Bettis out from the third round [so she can] be healthy enough for Nebraska.”

As a group, the roster of six — which is the maximum number of players who can be on scholarships at any given time, per the NCAA’s guidelines — finished with 141 pars and 33 birdies. The Matadors began their season at the Hobble Creek Fall Classic with 66-over 918 strokes, improving slightly at the Ram Classic while still lagging behind many division rivals.

Looking to right the ship while the season is young, the Matadors will head out to Omaha, Nebraska, for the Big O Classic at the Oak Hills Country Club from Oct. 3-4.