TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - After the first round of play at the Southeastern Conference Championship, the No. 3 Auburn women's golf team is tied for seventh following a 5-over-par 289 opening round. Sophomore Haley Wilson leads the team as she is tied for 14th with an even-par 71.
Hosted by the University of Alabama, the SEC Championship is a 54-hole stroke-play event being played at the NorthRiver Yacht Club in Tuscaloosa, Ala. The par-71 is being played at 6,057 yards for the tournament.
Coupled atop leaderboard are Arkansas and Georgia after carding rounds of 280 (-4). Vanderbilt, Ole Miss and LSU are locked in a tie for third at even-par 284. Alabama trails in sixth with a 3-over 287 while Auburn and South Carolina are tied for seventh at 5-over 289.
"Despite being in a tie for seventh, we had a very good round today," said Auburn head coach Kim Evans. "We had a lot of good looks and some consistent ball striking, but a lot of putts that did not fall."
The Tigers were at even-par with five holes left to play, but dropped five strokes down the stretch. The theme was consistent along the board as Nos. 14-18 ranked among the most difficult on the course Friday.
"You get some pretty skinny holes coming down the back stretch,"
said Evans. "There are a lot of breaking greens and you have to be heads-up on those last few holes."
Auburn's leader for the day was Wilson, who posted an even-par 70 to start her weekend. The Fort Mitchell, Ala., native made the turn at 1-under after finding a birdie at No. 7 and continued to roll with another birdie on No. 10. Wilson, however, hit double-bogey, birdie and bogey on Nos. 12, 13 and 14, respectively, before keeping a clean card to finish the round. She ended the round in a tie for 14th.
Wilson's team-leading first round marks the second-consecutive year that the sophomore has led the team after the first round of play. In last year's tournament, Wilson carded a 1-under-par 70 to tie for first after the opening 18 holes.
Following one stroke behind Wilson was the senior-junior combination of Candace Schepperle and Cydney Clanton. Both golfers finished the round at 1-over-par 71 to tie for 20th.
Rounding out the Auburn scorecard was freshman Carlie Yadloczky, who sits just two strokes behind Schepperle and Clanton. Making her SEC Tournament debut, the Casselberry, Fla., native posted a first-round 74 to tie for 33rd.
"Haley, Cydney and Candace really played well today and the scores really did not reflect how well they hit around the course," said Evans. "Carlie was putting together a really good round, as well.
All-around we had some great scores, we just needed some putts to fall for us."
Sophomore Patricia Sanz rounded out the Auburn lineup with a 7-over-par 78. She finished the first round in a tie for 50th in the 60-player field.
"We just got off to a slow start again today," said Evans. "But, we are prepared to get out there. It is moving day and we go into round two with a lot of work to."
Tee times at the SEC Tournament resume at 8:30 a.m., Saturday off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees. Auburn's tee times will run from 9:20 - 10 a.m.
off the No. 10 tee. Fans can follow all the action with live stats at www.GolfStat.com.