Women’s golf lead invitational heading into last day

Garrett Callahan

The Longhorns couldn’t have asked for a better second round as they finished Tuesday with another strong performance. Junior Madison Pressel led the team with a score of 1 under par 71 to give the Longhorns an eight-stroke lead in the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational. Texas now sits in first place going into today’s round eight strokes ahead of second-place Florida.

It has been 11 years since the Longhorns won their own tournament here in Austin. Veteran Coach Martha Richards said they want to focus on just playing right now.

“It has been a long time since Texas has won the Betsy Rawls, so we would like to do that,” Richards said. “But more than anything, what we are striving to do is to play the best golf we can play. If we can do that, we are going to take care of our business, and the win will be a result of that.”

Currently, Pressel is second place individually, only two strokes behind Florida’s Mia Piccio. Senior Nicole Vandermade also made it to the top 10 as she tied for sixth place after a second-round score of 73 (+1). Junior Desiree Dubreuil is not too far behind, as she is tied for 13th after Tuesday’s round of 3 over par, 75. To round out the Longhorns lineup, juniors Katelyn Sepmoree and Haley Stephens are tied for 33rd place with second-round scores of 74 (+2) and 79 (+7), respectively.

Pressel has a chance to capture an individual tournament win, which hasn’t been done since Jessica Reese captured the title in 2003. The home course advantage didn’t mean much to her though as she just goes out and plays golf, Pressel said.

“Honestly, I don’t think about it,” Pressel said. “You come to every tournament to win no matter where it is.”

Texas is paired with Florida and Tulsa going into today’s shotgun start and the final round. Pressel is matched head-to-head with Piccio on the first tee to see who will come out on top. Pressel is happy with the team’s position going into today’s final round.

“I am excited. We are winning by eight, and that is a pretty nice margin to go into the last day,” Pressel said. “We will have a morning shotgun, so it probably will not be as windy. We will all have to make some birdies in order to keep that lead. We are right where we want to be. You could not ask for something better going into the last day.”

Printed on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 as: Strong second round places Horns in first at home course