Panthong’s win leads Flashes to second-place finish at Entrada Classic

Kent State’s Pimnipa Panthong poses with her trophy after coming in first place at the BYU at Entrada Classic. The Flashes finished second out of 14 teams.

Amanda Levine

Pimnipa Panthong finished 8-under thanks to a strong third round to secure a first-place finish at the BYU at Entrada Classic.

Panthong’s performance shined through while the Flashes finished second in the tournament’s team standings behind the host school, Brigham Young. Panthong opened with a first-round 67 and had good confidence, said coach Greg Robertson

“She stayed patient,” Robertson said. “(She) didn’t let anything bother her.”

In last year’s tournament, Panthong struggled on the 18th hole. This year, she went back with the mindset of making sure she didn’t falter like last year.

“She had a good boogie and played well,” Robertson said. “It’s a tough hole, and she handled it well.”

Although Kent State dropped one spot over the course of the two-day event, it still finished at 2-over, only two strokes away from the lead. The Flashes finished the tournament with 42 birdies and averaged 4.87 on par-5s.  Robertson said the team looked good during the tournament, but some of their shots fell short.

“We were in control in the tournament,” Robertson said. “Toward the end of the second round, we dropped. The last round (Brigham Young) played well.”

Karoline Stormo also had a sound performance for the Flashes, moving up five spots after the first round to finish in a tie for fifth place. Stormo and Panthong were the only Flashes to place in the top five of the tournament.

Robertson said it was nice to see Stormo finish in the top 10 after coming in first place in last year’s tournament. Panthong led the Flashes in birdies with 14, followed by Stormo who had nine.

Michaela Finn and Kory Nielsen both finished in the top 20. Finn placed 17th after moving up seven spots with nine birdies, three of which were in the last round. Nielsen tied for the 20th and had back-to-back birdies at one point.

Chloe Salort tied for 43rd in the tournament after dropping 19 spots over the two days, finishing at 15-over for the tournament.

The tournament consisted of 14 universities, four of which are currently ranked in the top 50 women’s golf programs in the country.

Prior to the tournament, Panthong moved up two spots in the NCAA women’s golf rankings, where she now ranks 39th in the nation. After the first round of the tournament, Panthong had eight birdies.

This week’s Golfstat rankings have the Flashes at 18th in the country, dropping two spots from last week.

The Flashes’ next tournament will be March 26-27 at the Henssler Financial Intercollegiate in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Amanda Levine is a sports reporter. Contact her at [email protected].