CHANDLER, Ariz. – The Northern Arizona women's golf team finished third at the Big Sky Conference Golf Championship on Tuesday, placing behind team champion Northern Colorado and Sacramento State.
"We played well," said Head Coach Brad Bedortha. "The scores were lower than they have been in the past. We competed well. I am proud of them, especially how young we are to play in the final grouping and feel the pressure to play in that environment."
Junior Kaitlen Parsons was the top finisher for the team one stroke ahead of her teammate junior Stephanie Kim after an even par 72 to finish the tournament at two-over par 218. She tied the seventh-best three-round tournament score in school history, one stroke off her best career tournament performance, to place seventh overall in the field.
"I struggled on one hole and I came back after that," said Parsons. "It is always a fight to the end. We are a young team. It was good for everyone to experience the conference championship. Nerves were flying today."
Kim had a final day charge with the makings of her best round of the season, going three- under par over the first 12 holes. But a triple bogey at the 13th derailed the round. She finished with a one-over par 73 to place eighth overall.
"I was playing really well and my shots were going great," said Kim. "I birdied all four of the par threes on the course today which I have never done so that was a good accomplishment. I had one hiccup hole and that just got me. I had so many birdie opportunities that I left. It was frustrating towards the end but it was a lot of fun with all the pressure today. It was a good experience for everyone."
Northern Colorado won the team title by two strokes over Sacramento State behind the medalist honors of Careligh Silvers, who shot a three-under par 69 in the final round to beat her sister and teammate Chelsea Silvers and Portland State's Tiffany Schoning by one stroke.
NAU shot a three-round total of 896, finishing 16 strokes behind the Bears and 14 back of the Hornets. The 896 team score was a season best and the third-best single round total in school history. The Lumberjacks posted a 301 in the final round.
Freshman Laura Jabczenski and Susana Mejia each carded rounds of 78 in the third round, tying for third best on the team and providing the final two team scores. Jabczenski, who hails from Tucson, rebounded from a 42 on the front nine to post an even-par score of 36 on the last nine holes.
Freshman Melissa Olson finished her freshman season with an 82 in the final round that was hurt by a five-over par nine on the second to last hole of the round.
The Lumberjacks return all six players from their roster to the team in 2012-13.