Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
YORKTOWN, Ind. - A record-setting day on two fronts for the Central Michigan women's golf team.
Kristen Wolfe shot a school-record 1-over par 73 Monday to lead the Chippewas on the opening day of the Ball State-hosted Cardinal Classic at The Players Club.
Wolfe followed her 73 with a 6-over 78 and is tied for 20th place at 7-over. The field comprises 86 players. The final round in the 54-hole event is scheduled for Tuesday.
CMU's 316 score in Monday's second round is a school 18-hole team record. CMU shot 325 in the opening round and stands at 641 in 14th place in the 16-team event.
Wolfe started her round on the 7th hole under the shotgun start format. She double-bogeyed No. 18 and stood at 4-over on the first tee. She then made four consecutive birdies.
"I think (Wolfe is) just overall hitting good iron shots and obviously making the putts," CMU coach Cheryl Stacy said. "She's been striking the ball well this year. I think it all just clicked.
"Her putting's been a lot better this year and she's hitting her driver really well. Really solid, long, and keeping it in play."
CMU's Natalie Johnson also posted two sub-80 rounds on Monday, opening with a 78 and closing with a 74. She stands at 8-over, tied for 23rd.
"Natalie on her 74 (round) took an 8, so she had a lot of good holes," Stacy said. "We had a lot more birdies that was a big improvement."
Johnson made five birdies en route to her 74 and followed her quadruple bogey 8 on the par-4 12th with a par and then back-to-back birdies.
Also for CMU, Bria Colosky shot 86-81 - 167; Hannah Matthies shot 88-85 - 173; and Holly Hines finished 94-83 - 177. Wolfe and Johnson are sophomores, Matthies is a senior, and Colosky and Hines are freshmen.
The Chippewas made a combined 20 birdies on the day, with Johnson carding a team-leading seven and Wolfe adding six.
That the Chippewas made so many birdies relative to what they had made in events last spring and at the fall-season opening Mary Fossum Invitational last weekend at Michigan State was an encouraging sign, Stacy said, as was the fact that four of the five Chippewas improved from Monday's morning round to the afternoon.
"That's the thing that's very encouraging," Stacy said. "We had more birdies than we've had. We've concentrated on just trying to hit more greens and hit fairways.
"We've worked on taking a pin sheet, looking at where they are in relation to the front of the green, the middle of the green, the back of the green. They're dissecting the greens more than they've ever done. They're thinking a little differently."
"We definitely walked away from today's rounds with many positives and we're looking forward to tomorrow's round."
First-place Eastern Kentucky shot 572 and holds a commanding 22-shot lead over second-place Eastern Michigan (594). Northern Illinois (596) is third.