FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Northern Arizona University's women's golf team will travel to compete at the Rio Verde Invitational. The tournament is slated to begin March 7th concluding on March 9th.
The competition will be stiff this weekend as NAU will take on some quality teams. This year's field includes the likes of Illinois State, Akron, Arkansas-Little Rock, Ball State, Bowling Green, Bradley, Eastern Michigan, Kansas City, Missouri State, Montana, Northern Arizona, Northern Illinois, Ohio, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Toledo, Wichita State, Xavier in addition to host school Western Michigan.
"The level of competition has gotten better each tournament this spring," said head coach Brad Bedortha. "We've played pretty well so far this spring and I just want us to be competitive. We're playing a different course than last year so that will be a challenge."
NAU captured the team title in 2013, winning for the first time. The Lumberjacks set a new two-round scoring record (597) en route to the championship as the tournament lost a round due to heavy rain. The medalist also hailed from Northern Arizona as sophomore Savana Bezdicek finished with a 144 (E), matching Western Michigan's Erica Bieniek (2003) for the lowest winning two-round score against par in tournament history. Bezdicek will have a chance to become the first ever repeat medalist. Northern Arizona looks to join Michigan and Kansas as the only teams to win the tournament twice.
"Savana played well here last year," said Bedortha. "She's obviously had some small struggles but she is close to playing much better. Hopefully she can get more comfortable and play well this weekend."
The Lumberjacks have played some very strong rounds of golf this spring garnering a first place finish at the Grand Canyon Invitational and a tie for second at the Red Rocks Invitational. Thanks to their play so far this spring newcomers Brittany McKee and Jacquie LeMarr have garnered one Big Sky Golfer of the Week Award apiece. LeMarr is coming off a medalist performance at the Red Rocks Invitational where she posted rounds of 70 and 71.
"The good thing about our team is that we have a number of athletes who can compete and step up on any given day so I'm excited to see how fair this weekend," Bedortha said.
The Rio Verde Invitational has an Instagram account @RioVerde2014
The hashtag being used for the tournament is #RV2014
Follow NAU Golf on Twitter at @NAUGolf and Facebook at NAU Golf.