(Editor’s note: Montana State University press release)
BOZEMAN – Montana State’s Delaney Elliott put together consecutive career-best rounds and sits atop the individual leaderboard following the opening day of the Red Rocks Invitational on Saturday, March 23, at Agave Highlands golf course.
Elliott, playing individually, began the day with a record-setting first round of 18 holes. Elliott fired a 4-under-par 67 behind six birdies and two bogeys. That score tied the lowest individual 18-hole round in program history set by Paige Crawford in 2013. She sat in a tie for first heading into the second round.
The Bobcat junior continued her strong play in her second set of 18 holes Saturday. Elliott carded just one bogey in the second round and finished with a 3-over 68. That score tied the second-best mark in school history with three others.
Elliott is alone in first place in the individual standings at 7-under 135. If the tournament ended after 36 holes, Elliott would own Montana State golf’s best two-round total by 10 strokes. Elliott has the second most amount of birdies in the tournament field with 10. She sits a stroke ahead of North Dakota State’s Maddie Herzog and Southern Utah’s Chanikan Yongyuan who each are at 6-under 136.
“Delaney played amazing,” Montana State head coach Brittany Basye said. “To put two rounds together like that is stellar. I’m super happy and proud of her effort today.”
Montana State is 16th in the team standings following the first two rounds of the Red Rocks Invite. The Bobcats shot a 312 as a squad in the first round but responded with a 300 in the second round. Gonzaga is on top of the team scoreboard with 569 strokes.
Junior Coral Schulz led the Bobcat lineup by shooting rounds of 76 and 74. She’s tied for 51st overall at 8-over 150. Senior Clare Dittemore carded an 80 in her opening round, but followed it with a 1-over 72 to finish the day tied for 67th at 152.
“Coral was good throughout today and we’ll take her two scores,” Basye said. “I’ve talked about consistency all year and we’ve got a couple that are proving that they can be. Clare came back by fighting through the first round to get a 72 in the second round which is pretty darn good.”
Freshmen Sofia Rodriguez Todd and Lucia Prieto Romano are third and fourth, respectively, in MSU’s scoring lineup. Rodriguez Todd carded a first-day 154 (78-76) and Prieto Romano recorded a 156 (78-78). Lilly Navarre rounded out MSU’s five-person total with two-round total of 159 strokes.
Junior Kelly Hooper joined Elliott playing individually in the tournament field. Hooper is tied for 51st at 150 with back-to-back rounds of 74 and 76.
The Montana State golf team returns to action at Agave Highlands for the final round of play at 9:30 a.m. MDT Sunday.