Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Top-ranked Tide shoots best score


The Alabama women’s golf team was ranked first in the nation by Golf World going into the Tar Heel Invitational in Chapel Hill, N.C., Friday. Coming out of competition, the Crimson Tide left no doubt that it deserves that ranking.

The Tide, which has already won one tournament this season, dominated opponents for all three days of competition on the 54-hole, 72-par course. Alabama also smashed tournament records, shooting a 28-under par with a score of 836, and beating the tournament scoring record by 14 shots, showing the Tide could handle its No. 1 ranking with poise.

“Obviously, it was the lowest 54-hole total we’ve had in Alabama history,” head coach Mic Potter said. “We had three top 10 individual finishes. I would’ve liked to have played a little better the last day. We learned a lot about our team, about ourselves.”

Junior Brooke Pancake, who won the individual competition, said much of the same.

“We went and did very well,” she said. “We seemed happy and excited to play. Even though we did have such a great tournament, we weren’t complacent.”

Indeed, Alabama stayed hungry throughout the tournament, playing in a consistently competitive fashion. The Tide shot an 11-under par the first day of competition, a 14-under par the second day of competition and 3-under par on the last day of competition to secure one of Alabama’s greatest performances of the year, and maybe ever.

In the process, Alabama beat the LSU Tigers, the Duke Blue Devils, the Georgia Bulldogs, the Vanderbilt Commodores and the Virginia Cavaliers, all of which were ranked in the top 10 nationally.

The Tide also had three players finish in the top 10 of competition: sophomore Jennifer Kirby, who finished tied for sixth in the tournament with a six-under-par score of 210, senior Camilla Lennarth, who finished third overall with a 10-under-par score of 206, and Pancake, who finished the tournament ranked first with an 11-under-par score of 205. This was Pancake’s first individual victory of her career. Despite that, she said the victory was a team effort.

“I would say this is an overall team victory,” Pancake said. “Everyone played very well. I pulled out my first victory, which is always kind of nice to get under your belt. Nobody really stood out because we were all in the top 10.”

As well as Alabama played over the weekend, no players on the team let their No. 1 ranking go to their heads. Potter said that so far, his team has handled the pressure involved with being No. 1.

“Our mantra is, it doesn’t matter,” Potter said. “It doesn’t matter until the end of the year. We don’t really think about winning or losing too much. Our most important shot is the one we’re about to take.”

Pancake said, “In golf, rankings help you build confidence, but we can’t obsess over it. I think from the team standpoint it was more of a confidence booster.”

Alabama is now looking forward to its next tournament, the Pac-10/SEC Challenge in Stanford, Calif., in early November. Despite Alabama’s dominating performance, Pancake still said she thinks the team has room to improve.

“[We should be] building on what we’ve built off of so far,” Pancake said. “We take what wasn’t great that week, and try to make it better for the next week.”

Potter said, “With us, it always comes down to putting. We know the shots that are required [for the upcoming tournament]. We’re going to worry about making ourselves better.”

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