March 4, 2013
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The Colorado State women's golf team opened play at the 2013 Juli Inkster Spartan Invitational on Monday, surging out to a strong start behind a career-best effort from sophomore Jessa LaBarbera, and the steady play of junior Betsy Kelly. But after sitting in 11th place through 18 holes, the Rams faded as a team in Round 2, slipping two spots into 13th heading into Tuesday's final round at Almaden Golf & Country Club.
Kelly, from Forest Lake, Minn., continued her consistent play for the Rams, carding her 13th and 14th consecutive rounds of sub-80 golf to extend the longest such streak on the team. She opened the day with a 6-over, 78, and shaved two strokes during the afternoon session to close Day 1 as the Rams' top finisher with a two-round total of 154 (+10) in a tie for 40th.
But CSU head coach Susan Jennings noted that Kelly may have left a few strokes out on the course with some tough breaks around the greens.
"I am pleased with Betsy's consistency," said Jennings. "She hit the ball the best she has all season, she just couldn't get the putts to fall today."
LaBarbera, playing in the Rams' lineup for the third time in 2012-13, opened play on Monday with the best round of her collegiate career. The Allen, Texas, native overcame two early bogies with birdies on the par-4 third and ninth holes, to finish the round at even-par and in a five-way tie for sixth place.
LaBarbera's round bested her previous career-low, in the second round at CSU's own Colonel Bill Wollenburg Ptarmigan Ram Classic last September, by one stroke. But as play continued into Round 1, LaBarbera fell off the pace with a 14-over 86. She closed the day as the Rams' No. 2 performer, behind Kelly.
"Jessa played really well this morning," added Jennings. "Most of the team really struggled today. We are hoping to go out and play better tomorrow."
Juniors Emily Roering and Christina Spinzig are tied for 65th. Roering opened with a 79 and carded an 84 in Round 2, while Spinzig shot 82 and 81, to move to 19-over. Redshirt freshman Mikayla Tatman is six strokes off the pace of Roering and Spinzig in 72nd.
The Rams return to the course with a shotgun start Tuesday morning beginning at 9:15 a.m. MT. Live scoring of the final round of action is available at www.GolfStat.com.
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