Senior Cassie Rushing
April 20, 2014
By Tyler Wooten
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Saluki women's golf currently sits in fifth place after shooting a solid first-round score of 300 amid stiff competition at the first day of the Missouri Valley Conference Women's Golf Championship at Panther Creek Country Club on Sunday.
Four teams shot below 300 on the first day, including current leader and host Bradley, who shot a school-record 293 on Day One thanks to a 69 by Danielle Lemek. Lemek is tied for the overall lead with Indiana State's McCall Christopher at 69, the first time in MVC history that two players have shot below 70 at the conference championship.
Amid the historic performances at the top of the leaderboard, the streaking Salukis are in fifth place after firing a solid 300 on Sunday to sit seven strokes off of Bradley heading into Monday's second round. Southern received four scores 76 or lower and a drop score of 77 by freshman Brooke Cusumano (tied for 26th, 77), who has now shot a 77 in five of her last six rounds.
Leading the way for Southern was senior and three-time returning All-MVC honoree Cassie Rushing, who shot a one-over par 73 on Sunday. Rushing shot a one-under 35 on the back-nine and totaled three birdies on the day to help SIU's cause. The Marion, Ill., native has owned SIU's lowest score at the conference meet in two of her previous three conference tournaments.
Junior Kris Grimes is tied for 14th overall after shooting a first-round 75 that saw two birdies and a one-over par 37 on the back-nine. Both Ashleigh Rushing and Xianmei Jin are tied for 20th overall after shooting a 76 on Sunday. By her 12th hole, Rushing was SIU's lowest score at one-under par (tied for third) after shooting two of her three birdies on holes 10 and 11. But, the senior shot two double-bogeys and one bogey in her final six holes to fall to four-over on the day.
Day Two of the MVC Championships begins at 9 a.m. at Panther Creek Country Club.
Team Scores (Through 18 holes):
1. Bradley: 293
2. Indiana State: 296
T3. Wichita State: 297
T3. Illinois State: 297
5. Southern Illinois: 300
T6. Evansville: 305
T6. Missouri State: 305
9. Northern Iowa: 307
10. Loyola: 311