Cougars Begin Title Quest

Freshman Daphne Vines was BYU's top golfer on the first day of the NCAA Championship in Flordia.

DAYTONA BEACH -- No. 13 BYU began its national title quest with a first round 309--good for 19th place after a windy first day at the 2007 NCAA Championship at LPGA International Legends Course on Tuesday.

"The course played real tough today--it was a tough scoring day," BYU head coach Sue Nyhus said.

Indeed scores were high on the first day of the national championship with 19 out of 24 teams shooting at least 14 over par. BYU had a morning tee time and played steady golf for most of the day. Even though BYU didn't card any real low scores to keep its team score low, it also didn't have to count a bad score. With steady 20-mile-an-hour winds, BYU coaches figured a 75 was par for the LPGA International Legends Course on the day.

"Going into today our goal was to have a low stress day, which means fairways, greens and pars," BYU assistant coach Dave DeSantis said. "You can't win it on the first day, but you can sure lose it. I'm pleased with our composure and especially pleased with how composed Ashley (Childers)was today. She came into a tough situation and performed well."

Childers, who hasn't competed for BYU since the BYU Dixie Classic on April 4, showed why BYU might have one of the deepest teams in the nation. The junior from Menifee, Calif. was the replacement for BYU's No. 2 golfer Natalia Jimenz, whose automobile accident on May 11 kept her out of the national championship. Childers stepped in nicely for the Cougars, carding a six-over-par 78 on the first day.

Leading the Cougars on day one was true freshman Daphne Vines whose signature steady play helped her to a three-over 75. The Texas product is tied for 22nd individually. All-American Rachel Newren, who is gunning for a top-10 finish to end her record-breaking career at BYU, started the tournament with a five-over-par 77. Newren finished in 16th place at last year's national championship and in third place at the 2007 NCAA West Regional. Juli Erekson and Danielle von Arnim both carded 79s on the tournament's first day.

BYU will have an afternoon tee time on Wednesday as the aimed toward making their way into the top 10 during day two. Only six shots separate BYU from the top 10. Playing against the top teams in the nation BYU didn't play its best round on Monday but are still in a great position to finish well. With still three rounds to play, the Cougars are still in the hunt for their best NCAA finish in school history.

"I anticipate we'll come out tomorrow and play well," DeSantis said. "All the girls are anxious to improve on their score; I think we'll have a good round tomorrow."

OF NOTE:

The Cougars were front page news in the Daytona Beach News-Journal on Tuesday, where the story of injured teammates Natalia Jimenez and Hannah Summerhays was the top sports story of the day. BYU is playing without both Jimenez and Summerhays because of a automobile accident at the NCAA West Regional two weeks ago in St. George. You can read about BYU's amazing story at the following link.

http://www.news-journalonline.com/NewsJournalOnline/Sports/Headlines/sptGLFW01052207.htm

BYU INDIVIDUAL SCORES

T22. Daphne Vines 75 +3

T53. Rachel Newren 77 +5

T73. Ashley Childers 78 +6

T83. Danielle von Arnim 79 +7

T83. Juli Erekson 79 +7

TEAM SCORES

1. USC (7) +7

2. North Carolina (21) +9

2. Louisville (31) +9

4. Stanford (10) +11

5. Duke (1) +12

6. Denver (15) +14

7. UCLA (8) +15

7. Georgia (3) +15

7. Vanderbilt (4) +15

7. Purdue (12) +15

7. UC Irvine (25) +15

12. Arizona (16) +16

13. New Mexico (20) +17

14. Pepperdine (6) +18

14. Wake Forest (17) +18

16. Arizona State (2) +19

16. TCU (18) +19

18. BYU (13) +21

18. Auburn (5) +21

20. Michigan State (23) +22

21. Tennessee (14) +23

22. Oklahoma State (9) +24

23. Alabama (24) +26

24. Indiana (38) +32

(National Rankings in Parentheses)

Tags: Results