Spartans To Duel In El Diablo Intercollegiate
March 10, 2009
Spartanburg, S.C. - The USC Upstate women's golf team is set to play its fourth tournament in a span of 17 days as the Spartans are set to tee it up at the EKU El Diablo Intercollegiate Thursday and Friday. The tournament, hosted by Eastern Kentucky at the El Diablo Golf and Country Club in Citrus Springs, Fla., is a 54-hole event with 15 teams in the field. The teams will play 36 holes Thursday and 18 Friday. Upstate is coming off a ninth-place finish at the Low Country Intercollegiate last weekend.
Looking Back At The Low Country
Julie Miller continued her strong play this spring and led Upstate by finishing in a tie for 23rd at the Low Country Intercollegiate at the Moss Creek Golf Club. The Spartans finished ninth out of 12 teams in the tournament. Jennifer Judge was the second-lowest Spartan, finishing in a tie for 27th in her second tournament playing for Upstate. Richelle Wedzik was tied for 29th to give the Spartans three players in the top-30.
Spartans Look To Inch Up the Leaderboard
When Upstate takes to the course in the EKU El Diablo Intercollegiate, head coach Todd Lawton and the Spartans will look for a more consistent first round to enable the team to inch up the leaderboard. Upstate has traditionally shot its highest round of each tournament in the opening 18, then lowering the scores dramatically in the ensuing rounds. If Upstate can keep the scores low in the first round, the team should be able to finish higher and move closer to achieving top-5 finishes.
Seniors Winding Down Their Careers
Upstate head coach Todd Lawton will have to do some heavy recruiting to fill the void left by the six-member senior class who are winding down their careers at Upstate. Julie Miller, Audrey Church, Anna Hastings and Jessica Wofford are founding members of the Upstate women's golf program and have been integral leaders from day one. Sisters Richelle and Richia Wedzik have been in the program for three seasons. Together, the six have proven to be the backbone of the program.
Miller Making The Most Of Her Senior Season
Julie Miller has been a key figure since teeing off at the Anderson Invitational as a freshman in 2005. As a senior, she has continued to show the leadership expected of a veteran player and is having quite a season. She has been the low Spartan in each of the last two tournaments as she gets set to close out her collegiate career. She finished in a tie for ninth at the Red Rocks Intercollegiate to lead Upstate to a seventh-place finish in the 18-team field. She currently tops the Spartans with two top-20 finishes this season and ranks second with an 80.1 stroke average. For her career, she ranks third with an 81.8 stroke average and second with a .628 winning percentage. Her 17 top-20 individual finishes leads all Upstate golfers, while she ranks second all-time with two top-5 finishes and 10 top-10 efforts.
Here Comes The Judge
Jennifer Judge, a sophomore from Hurley, Miss., has made an immediate impact on the Spartans team after transferring to Upstate from Southern Miss following the first semester. She has played in the last two tournaments and has been the second-lowest Spartan finisher behind Julie Miller. In her first tournament ever in a Spartan uniform, she finished in a tie for 33rd with Richelle Wedzik to help lead Upstate to a seventh-place finish in the Red Rocks Invitational. In last weekend's Low Country Intercollegiate, she claimed a top-30 finish after tying for 27th.
Wedziks Battle It Out For Team Lead
Twin sisters Richelle and Richia Wedzik have battled each other for the team's stroke average title each of the last two seasons. As sophomores playing at Upstate, Richelle won the stroke average war with a 77.8 average. Last year, Richia took home the honors with a 79.7 stroke average. This season, Richelle is back on top at 79.9, but Richia is just one stroke behind at 80.9. Julie Miller is just two-tenths of a stroke away from the top spot with an 80.2 stroke average.