(Editor’s note: RMC Athletics release)
OKLAHOMA CITY – Rocky Mountain College’s women’s golf program is underway at the 2019 NAIA Women’s Golf National Championship.
“Just having the opportunity to compete as a team one more time is awesome, but we are very excited to play against the best teams in the country,” said head women’s golf coach Aaron Pohle. “We’ve been working hard all year for this, especially mentally.”
The No. 16 ranked Battlin’ Bears aren’t fazed by the NAIA’s biggest stage. The reigning Frontier Conference champions will be fielding the same team that participated in last year’s nationals.
“I’m excited for nationals this year,” said sophomore Amanda Conner. “As a freshman last year, there was a lot of nerves, but this year I feel prepared.”
“Preparing for nationals is similar to any tournament,” said Anna DeMars. “I just stuck to what I knew I needed to work on and practiced the same way that I would for any other competition.”
Rocky swept every Frontier Conference tournament this season and secured the conference championship title for the second year in a row. The five experienced golfers now have their sights set on leaving a mark at nationals this year.
At the championship last year, the team finished two rounds in 18th place with 656 strokes to miss the second day cut by just five strokes. Eryn Ellis advanced to the final round individually, but finished 31st after the round was rained out.
“We have a legitimate chance to win down here and I treasure the opportunity to be with this group of women who can compete at such a high level,” said sophomore Morgan O’Neil. “Chances like this come few and far between.”
The entire team earned all-conference selections. O’Neil, Ellis, and Hayden Flohr were selected first team All-Frontier while DeMars and Conner, plus freshman Kaelyn Volk, were selected second team.
Ellis was selected the 2018 Frontier Conference Women’s Golfer of the Year.
According to the player rankings at golfstat.com [golfstat.com], Ellis, Flohr, and DeMars are all currently ranked among the top 150 golfers in the NAIA. Ellis is ranked No. 33 with an adjusted scoring average of 76.57 while Flohr ranks No. 88 with an average of 78.78. DeMars rounds out the trio with a ranking of 144 and an adjusted scoring average of 80.57.
For DeMars and Ellis, who both graduated this spring, the next few days will be their last as Battlin’ Bears.
“Nationals is a big deal, but it’s just another tournament. Another couple days for us to play golf one more time as a team,” said Ellis. “Golf is our job and I am proud of myself and my team for what we have done so far and where this team is headed when I’m gone.”
“Going to nationals both years that I’ve been at Rocky feels so good,” said DeMars. “The memories and experiences that I have had are unbelievable.”
The 2019 Women’s Golf National Championship will take place May 14-17 at Lincoln Park Golf Course in Oklahoma City, Okla. The Battlin’ Bears will tee off tomorrow for the first round at 12:30 p.m. CDT.