ALLIGATOR STAFF REPORT
The UF women's golf team was eliminated 3-2 by LSU in the semifinals of the Hooters Match Play Championships on Monday.
Top-seeded Florida had defeated Chatanooga 3-2 earlier in the day before falling to the fourth-seeded Tigers.
The Gators started their 2009-10 season off strong placing first in the qualifying round of the Hooters Match Play Championships on Sunday.
The team finished stroke play with a total score of 585 (9 over par) after 36 holes on the par-72 course.
"We couldn't have asked for a better start," first-year Florida coach Jan Dowling said. "Everyone played really solid golf and built some confidence and also showed how competitive this group of ladies is. The flag went up and they were ready to play, and I think that will set the tone for the rest of the year."
Florida proved that age is not a factor in its golf game, with sophomores Andrea Watts (74, +2), Evan Jensen, Marika Lendl and freshmen Amelia Lewis and Isabelle Lendl.
Lewis led the Gators in the first round, with an even par-72 score. On her first hole of her second round, Lewis made a double bogey. She quickly recovered with a birdie on the next hole. Lewis finished with eight birdies, six bogeys and two double bogeys.
"A lot of people make a big deal about freshmen, but golf is a bit of a different sport," Dowling said. " They are so experienced and or at least some very experienced when they come into school and they're still just playing golf."
Jensen, Lewis and Watts all tied for thirteenth place after each carding two-over 146.
Watts (74, +2) had a birdie on the tenth hole and a triple bogey on the eleventh. Watts shot an even par-72 in the second round. Jensen, who carded the same score as Watts, totaled seven birdies, seven bogeys and one double bogey.
Markia Lendl tied for eighteenth in the tournament, an impressive showing considering she only participated in one tournament in her freshman season. She carded 73 (+1) on her first 18 holes, and a 74 (+2) on her second. Isabelle Lendl ended the qualifying round tied for forty-second.
The young Gator team proved themselves true competitors in their first tournament and will continue on in the Hooters Match Play tournament.