(MSUB Athletics release)
BILLINGS – BILLINGS, Mont. – Starting their collegiate careers off with a bang, Montana State University Billings women’s golf freshmen Kinsey Irvin and Tierney Messmer were their team’s top performers at the Yellowjacket Fall Invitational on Monday at Lake Hills Golf Course.
Irvin notched a 6-over-par 78 in her first collegiate round and is in a tie for third place, while Messmer was one stroke behind at 79 and is in a tie for fifth place. The Yellowjackets combined for a team score of 323 in their first round of the year, and are in second place behind fellow Great Northwest Athletic Conference school Concordia University (309).
“It was nice to play a tournament so early in the fall this year,” commented MSUB head coach Kevin Woodin. “Our two freshmen had good debuts shooting sub-80s. They were nervous, but settled down and posted solid scores. Shealyn was consistent and hit the ball well for us, but didn’t make a lot of putts. The pins today were difficult, and not many putts went in.”
Irvin’s round was highlighted by a 20-foot birdie putt on the par-4, 264-yard fifth hole. Though it was her lone birdie on the day, she prevented high scores as her card had nothing worse than a bogey on it.
Messmer was similarly efficient, as she had just one double bogey and a pair of birdies in her first round as a Yellowjacket. Messmer played the par-3 holes well, making birdie on the 154-yard fourth hole and drilling a 7-iron to two feet on the 138-yard 11th hole.
Senior Shealyn Hafer finished her first round of the year with an 8-over-par 80, and enters the final day of the tournament in a tie for seventh place. Like Messmer, Hafer benefitted from a tight tee shot on Hole 11 as she stuck an 8-iron to five feet and made the putt. She made one of her top shots of the day on the par-4, 335-yard third hole, sticking her approach to five feet.
Competing as an individual at the event, sophomore Sydney Rochford had one of MSUB’s better rounds with an 84 in her first outing of the year. Rochford had one of the most exciting shots of the day, when her 72-yard approach shot on the par-5, 464-yard second hole wound up in the cup for an eagle. “Sydney had a consistent round, and I was happy for her,” Woodin said. “That is a good round for her to begin her season, and I know she has worked hard.”
Finishing the day with an 86 was sophomore Renae Heisler, who is in a tie for 15th place. Heisler’s top shot of the day came off the tee box on the par-4, 379-yard 15th hole as she caught a downhill roll in the fairway with a 5-wood. Her chip shot from 10 yards off the green rattled the flag, and she settled for a birdie to save a stroke.
MSUB’s fifth golfer was senior Sarah Schroefel, who wound up with a 91 and is in a tie for 21st place. Freshman Jalen Wagner made her collegiate debut with a 90 on Monday, and Kylee Knobloch also competed as an individual firing a 100.
Concordia’s Cammie Decker is the individual leader after Round 1, as she carded a 1-over-par 73. Her teammate Shantel Antonio is close behind with a 77, and Staesha Flock also broke 80 with a 79 to give the Cavaliers a 14-stroke lead at the top of the table.
“We have the potential tomorrow to pull up a few strokes, and I’d like to see us drop 10 or more,” Woodin said. “The weather should be great again, so I think we should have a chance to do that if we improve our putting.”
Rochford was picked as the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Day…the 84 matched her career single-round best.
The second and final round is set for 8:30 a.m. Tuesday morning.
MSUB’s men fired a two-round total of 580, improving between rounds with a 288 in the second after a 292 in the first. “Overall it was a good day for us, and it was nice to see us improve from our first round to the afternoon round,” said head coach Kevin Woodin. “To shoot even-par as a team in Round 2 was very good, and I would like to see us continue to improve. Hopefully we can register an under-par round tomorrow.”
Garrett Woodin led MSUB with a two-round score of 143, as he finished the day 1-under-par after rounds of 71 and 72. The highlight of the junior’s day came on the par-5 10th hole, when he drilled a 4-iron 217 yards leaving him with an easy two-foot putt for an eagle.
Sophomore Caleb Trost was just one stroke behind Woodin, and is in a tie for fifth place after Day 1. Trost responded from a 2-over-par 74 in the opening round by carding a 2-under-par 70 to finish the day. Displaying accuracy with a wedge, Trost nestled his approach shot on the par-4 Hole 12 to three feet from 140 yards out to make a birdie.
“It’s good to see both Garrett and Caleb in the top-five after Day 1,” Woodin said. “Caleb was very consistent from what I saw, and he was really steady all day. Garrett played well, and his speed was very good around the greens.”
MSUB’s biggest improver between rounds was Jayd Dion, who shaved off five strokes and wound up with a 145 to sit in a tie for seventh place. Dion made a 75 in the morning session, before matching his collegiate best with a 2-under-par 70 in Round 2. He avoided a scare on Hole 17 when he thought his tee shot landed out-of-bounds, only to find it in play by a few feet. From there, he stuck a 125-yard shot to two feet and tapped in a birdie putt.
“It was nice to see Jayd improve by five shots, and he played very well in the afternoon,” Woodin commented.
Making his debut as a Yellowjacket, Payton Stott is in 13th place after shooting a two-round total of 148 on Monday. Stott followed an even-par 72 in the opening round with a 4-over-par 76 to end the day. The junior showed off his power by driving the green on the short par-4 third hole.
Also playing for the first time as a Yellowjacket was Logan Martin, who carded scores of 78 and 75 to sit in 19th place with a 153 while competing as an individual. Like Stott, Martin was able to save strokes out of the tee box as he cleared the lake on Hole 5 with the driver.
Concordia University (Ore.) leads the team race after the opening two rounds, shooting team scores of 283 and 290 for a 573. Jaxson Daskalos notched a tournament-best round of 66 in the opener, and followed with a 71 to claim the No. 1 spot with a 137. Fellow Cavalier Riley Killip is three strokes behind with a 140 (69-71). CU holds a three-stroke lead on the University of Jamestown, which shot a 576 (296-280) on Monday.
“Concordia and Jamestown are very good teams, and they will make it difficult to move up,” said Woodin. “I’d like us to eliminate some of the double bogeys we had on our cards, as we had just a few too many bigger scores.”
Woodin was picked as the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Day…Dion’s other career 70 also came at Lake Hills, during the Yellowjacket Spring Invite last April.
The third and final round will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning.
2018 Yellowjacket Fall Invitational
Lake Hills Golf Club | Billings, MT
Day 1 Results | Sept. 10, 2018
Team – 1. Concordia University (Ore.), 573 (283-290); 3. MSU Billings, 580 (292-288). Individual – 1. Jaxson Daskalos, CU, 137 (66-71); 4. Garrett Woodin, MSUB, 143 (71-72); T5. Caleb Trost, MSUB, 144 (74-70); T7. Jayd Dion, MSUB, 145 (75-70); 13. Payton Stott, MSUB, 148 (72-76); 19. Logan Martin, MSUB, 153 (78-75).
Yellowjacket Fall Invitational
Lake Hills Golf Club | Billings, MT
Round 1 Scores | Sept. 10, 2018
Team – 1. Concordia (Ore.), 309; 2. MSU Billings, 323. Individual – 1. Cammie Decker, CU, 73; T3. Kinsey Irvin, MSUB, 78; T5. Tierney Messmer, MSUB, 79; T7. Shealyn Hafer, MSUB, 80; T11. Sydney Rochford, MSUB (IND), 84; T15. Renae Heisler, MSUB, 86; 20. Jalen Wagner, MSUB (IND), 90; T21. Sarah Schroefel, MSUB, 91; 31. Kylee Knobloch, MSUB (IND), 100.