Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
YORKTOWN, Ind. - A big step forward for the Central Michigan women's golf team, and a whole lot on which to build.
Four Chippewas turned in sub-80 scores Tuesday in the final round of the 54-hole Cardinal Classic, hosted by Ball State, at The Players Club.
Freshman Bria Colosky carded a career-low 3-over par 75, while Kristen Wolfe, Holly Hines and Natalie Johnson each shot 79. It was also a career best for Hines, a freshman.
The Chippewas finished the round with a 312 team score, eclipsing the team record 18-hole score (316) they posted in Monday's second round of the tournament.
"I was really happy with the way it went today," CMU coach Cheryl Stacy said. "I think it was positive momentum from (Monday). They've been very upbeat and they're making more birdies. There's a lot of good energy, good chemistry within the whole team.
"Just knowing that they can do it, and seeing that they can do it, I think that's going to give them a lot of confidence. It's kind of contagious. They're learning and we've been working hard and hopefully we can keep that momentum going into the next event."
CMU, which shot 325 in Monday's opening round, finished the tournament with a 953 team score, good for 14th place in the 16-team field, which included several Mid-American Conference schools.
The Chippewas finished one shot behind 13th-place Indiana State.
CMU carded six birdies in Tuesday's final round, four of them from Colosky, and finished the tournament with 26 birdies, which ranked eighth among the 16 teams in the field.
Wolfe had the best individual finish among CMU players, tying for 24th with a 230 total. She opened on Monday with a school-record 73 and followed with a 78 in Monday's afternoon round.
Johnson finished among a group tied for 30th at 231 after rounds of 78-74-79, and Colosky finished 64th in the 84-player field with a 242 total.
Johnson's Tuesday round was symbolic, Stacy said, of the kind of improvement the Chippewas are showing. She started on the 14th hole and made a double bogey on the fourth and a triple on the fifth. She recovered to birdie the ninth hole and played her final seven holes in 1-under par.
"She could have gotten down on herself, but she came back and played well coming in," Stacy said.
Eastern Kentucky posted an 867 team total to win the event, while Eastern Michigan (880) was second. Kelsey Murphy of Eastern Michigan finished at 5-under 211 to capture medalist honors.