Charleston, S.C. – A rainy Monday morning made things interesting in the first round and the rain gave way to vastly improved conditions in the second round Monday afternoon as the USC Upstate women's golf team stands ninth after the first day of the CSU Wendy's Invitational at the Rivertowne Country Club.
The teams teed off Monday morning in weather conditions that produced hard, steady rain with wind. The scores certainly reflected the poor playing conditions for all of the teams. As the front passed through during the day and the conditions improved, the scores plummeted in the second round with all but one of the 13 teams in the field posting a lower score in the afternoon round.
"We got off to a slow start this morning, but recovered to improve in the afternoon," said Upstate head coach Todd Lawton. "All five players contributed today and I am excited about that. This was our first 36-hole day this fall and we held up well mentally and physically."
Upstate shot rounds of 324 and 309 for a total of 633 after the first day of competition. The Spartans will begin Tuesday's final round in ninth place. College of Charleston is the overnight leader with a 577 total and is followed on the leaderboard by Coastal Carolina (588), Wofford (609), Radford (610), Charleston Southern (610), Tennessee Tech (612), Richmond (614), Presbyterian (627), Upstate (633), College of Charleston "B" (637), Towson (647), The Citadel (664) and USC Beaufort (665).
Playing in hard, steady rain during the morning, Upstate opened the tournament with a 324 in the first round. Led by Allea Hawkins' 78, the Spartans stood tie for eighth with College of Charleston's "B" team after the first 18 holes. The Spartans were four strokes back of seventh and 10 back of fifth place. College of Charleston opened the tournament with a 290 to take the lead into the second round.
Upstate got scores of 78 from Hawkins, an 81 from Amanda Hall, an 82 from Brittany Lowe and an 83 from Rachel Reiling for the four scores counting toward the team score of 324. Malika Allie opened with an 86.
After only posting one round in the 70's in the demanding first round, Upstate got three rounds in the 70's in the second round to post a 309 and lower its team score by 15 strokes from the morning round to the afternoon. Hall led the way with a 75, while Reiling came home with a 76. Lowe carded a 78 and Allie finished with an 80 for the four countable scores. Hawkins carded an 81.
Hall is the top Spartan through the first day of the tournament. She is tied for 31st with a 156 total. Hawkins and Reiling are tied for 42nd with 159 totals. Lowe is tied for 44th at 160 and Allie owns a 166 total heading into the final round.
"Amanda and Rachel were very strong throughout the afternoon and produced some great birdie opportunities. It was nice to see," said Lawton. "I feel good about our progress after taking a little time off since our first two tournaments early in September."