Putting problems leave women’s golf team third

Josh Johnston

The short game plagued the 14th ranked Kent State women’s golf team at the Central District Invitational in Parrish, Fla. Monday and yesterday. Despite the putting problems, the team still finished third in its first tournament of the spring.

“We did a lot of things good, but our short game – the putting – was a little spotty for us throughout the tournament,” coach Mike Morrow said. “That’s really the only thing that held us back.”

As a team, the Flashes finished the 54-hole invitational 48- over-par, 20 strokes behind tournament winner Michigan State.

“Third place was a nice finish,” Morrow said. “But I think we had higher expectations than that.”

The women began the second day of competition in second place, 14 shots behind 23rd ranked Michigan State. The team finished third after shooting 21- over-par in the third round.

Led by senior Kira Meixner at 7-over-par, three women finished in the top ten.




1. Michigan State +28

2. Texas A&M +38

3. Kent State +48

4. Ohio State +49

5. Michigan State +50

Meixner was tied for second after two rounds on Monday, but four bogeys and two double bogeys in the third round dropped her to sixth.

“My putting really kind of let me down,” Meixner said. “I just didn’t have the right feel for it. Overall, I’m happy that I came in the top ten.”

Four birdies in the second round eliminated a double bogey and two bogeys to give Meixner par.

1-over-par at the end of day one, she was poised to make a run against medalist Sara Brown of Michigan State in the third round.

“I think if I had made a few more putts it could have shifted the momentum,” she said. “But that never happened.”

Junior Kirby Dreher finished a stroke behind Meixner to tie for seventh with Lauren Johnson of Texas A&M. Dreher said tougher greens challenged her short game.

“The greens were trickier to read than I’d normally find,” she said. “I wasn’t hitting extremely bad putts… they just weren’t dropping this week.”

Dreher made par in the second round with an eagle and a birdie to finish Monday 3-over-par and in fifth place. Five bogeys in the third round brought her down to seventh place.”I’m kind of disappointed with how I finished,” she said. “But overall it was a decent first tournament after (winter) break.”

Rounding out top ten finishes for the Flashes was freshman Martina Gavier in ninth.

Gavier shot 4-over-par in the first round and 3-over in the second to finish the first day at 16th. On the back nine of the third round, she shot 1-under to card a 2-over-par round.

She finished in a three-way tie for ninth with Indiana’s Anita Gahir and Michigan State’s Aimee Neff.

“Three players in the top ten is a very nice accomplishment,” Morrow said. “Putting just wasn’t as sharp as we wanted it to be. I think the rest of our game was positive.”

The women return to the greens Sunday for the three day, 54-hole Lady Puerto Rico Classic in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Contact sports correspondent Josh Johnston at [email protected].