Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
YORKTOWN, Ind. - Freshman Danielle Sawyer shot 76-78 - 154 Monday in her Central Michigan debut, leading the Chippewa golf team on the opening day of the Ball State Cardinal Classic at The Players Club.
The final round of the 16-team, 54-hole event is scheduled for Tuesday.
The Chippewas shot 315-312 - 627 and stand in 14th place, 51 shots behind Eastern Kentucky, which shot 290-290 - 580. The 312 in Monday's second round matched the best 18-hole team score in CMU program history, and the 627 36-hole score is a school record.
The Chippewas posted a 312 last year in the third round of the Cardinal Classic on the same golf course. CMU's previous low 36-hole total, 638, came last spring in the Mid-American Conference Championship.
Toledo and Western Michigan, both of whom shot 589 on Monday, are tied for second.
Also for the Chippewas, Kristen Wolfe shot 78-77 - 155, Holly Hines shot 74-83 - 156, Natalie Johnson shot 87-75 - 162, and freshman Katie Logan shot 87-88 - 173.
Hines' 74 was a career-best, while Johnson's 75 was one stroke off her career-low. Johnson did well in rebounding from her opening 87, CMU coach Cheryl Stacy said.
"She's been playing well and she wants to play well so badly I think sometimes she pushes herself too much," Stacy said. "She needs to let it go and let it happen instead of forcing it. She came back and played really well that second round."
Hines' previous career-best, a 76, came last spring at the Clover Cup in Mesa, Ariz.
"She was striking the ball a lot better, more consistently and she's gotten her swing back (after) shoulder surgery," Stacy said. "She was disappointed with her second round, which is good because she's feeling like she can (go low) and do it more consistently."
Sawyer is among a group of five players tied for 38th, while Wolfe is tied for 43rd. Elsa Moberly of Eastern Kentucky shot 3-under 72-69 - 141 and holds a one-shot lead over Sydney Anderson of Ball State.
"She was very steady today," Stacy said of Sawyer, who shared the team lead with Hines with three birdies on the day. "She struggled a little bit in our qualifying rounds and she kind of worked that out. She looked really good out there.
"Overall I was happy for her and I was happy to see the team shooting some 70s."