Strong play keeps Women of Troy close

first_imgThe No. 2 USC women’s golf team was looking for a solid second day at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational.The team got one, but unfortunately for the Women of Troy, it just wasn’t good enough to put them in first.On the cusp · Junior Lisa McCloskey sits tied for 12th place at 3-over-par 147 (72-75) after two days of competition in Tacoma, Wash. She kept par through the first round, but a double bogey on the eighth hole Tuesday ended her streak. – Photo courtesy of USC Sports Information A consistent second round left the team at 2-under-par 574 (285-289), seven strokes behind No. 5 California at 9-under 567 (284-283), despite all five team members placing in the top 20 through two rounds.“We needed a couple of players to go a little bit deeper to keep up with Cal,” USC coach Andrea Gaston said. “Nobody did anything terrible, but we didn’t make enough birdies.”Senior Lizette Salas was the lowest scorer for the Women of Troy, firing a second consecutive 1-under-par round to tie for third at 2-under-par 142 (71-71). Salas sits six shots behind first-place Emily Childs of Cal. After closing her front nine with two bogeys, Salas rebounded with four birdies and a lone bogey on her final nine holes.Also tied for third is freshman Sophia Popov, who followed her first-round 68 with a 2-over-par 74 to sit at 2-under-par 142. Her front and back nines were remarkably similar, with two bogeys and one birdie on each.“I didn’t make any putts at all,” Popov said. “I don’t want to miss any three-footers [on Wednesday], which happened quite often today.”Junior Inah Park moved into the top 10 and is tied for seventh at 1-over-par 145 (74-71). One bogey was offset by two birdies as Park positioned herself for her first top-10 finish this season.Junior transfer Lisa McCloskey is tied for 12th at 3-over-par 147 (72-75). She had four birdies to offset five bogeys, but couldn’t overcome a double bogey on the eighth hole.   Sophomore Cyna Rodriguez is tied for 19th at 5-over-par 149 (76-73). She was sitting at 1-under through 16 before bogeying the final two holes.A top-20 finish would be Rodriguez’s best finish on the year.Despite their individual successes, the Women of Troy were realistic about their chances of winning the tournament.“A seven-shot deficit is pretty significant on a course like this,” Gaston said. “We need a few girls to go low if we’re going to have a chance.”The Tacoma Country and Golf Club is narrow, and trees line all the fairways. Gaston said it is different for the team to play on narrow fairways, as courses in Southern California tend to be more open.“There’s a lot of birdies out there, but you have to stay out of the trees,” Gaston said. “We definitely lost some strokes in the trees.”The team also knows that staying out of the trees alone won’t make up for seven strokes, and that the elements aren’t an excuse for not playing their best.“I’m looking to make a lot more birdie putts,” Popov said. “We’ve got to win the whole thing on the greens.”last_img read more