Tulane women’s golfers in second at regional

NEW ORLEANS — The 19th-ranked Tulane women’s golf team maintained its second-place standing in Friday’s second round of the NCAA East Regional with a 3-under 285 total and sits alone behind first-place Alabama at the Auburn University Club in Auburn, Ala.

Tulane will join Alabama and third-place Arkansas in Saturday’s final group and will tee off from the first tee at 8 a.m.

Tulane opened Friday’s round on the 10th hole and combined for 10 birdies, 16 total on the day, and was 4-under at the turn. The Green Wave got off to a rough start on the front nine with three bogeys and a double-bogey coming on the first three holes. But Tulane combined for six birdies on the final six holes, and three golfers concluded their round with birdies on the final hole.

“We played great on the back nine today and was 4-under at the turn, but we gave away five shots as soon as we made the turn,” Tulane coach Andrew Pratt said. “But we regrouped and finished strong. The girls combined for three birdies on the ninth hole, and I thought every player really contributed and played well. That’s the beauty of this game. You’re only good as your four scores, and we have five golfers that can shoot under par in any round.”

Tulane’s Madison Opfer carded a 3-under 69 and sits in a fourth place tie with a 5-under 139 total through 36 holes.

After posting an even-par first round, sophomore Gemma Dryburgh came up with a 2-under 70 and is tied with freshman Emily Penttila for ninth place.

Senior Maribel Lopez Porras finished even for the second round and is in 22nd place.

Penttila, Thursday’s first round- leader for the Green Wave, finished with a 2-over 74 and is 2-under through two rounds.

Freshman Silvia Garces is at 2-over 74 for 37th place.

Defending national champion Alabama leads the Green Wave by 14 strokes. No. 5 Arkansas is third, while No. 17 Oklahoma State is in fourth place and No. 23 Texas rounds out the top five teams.

On the individual leaderboard, Alabama’s Stephanie Meadow, the nation’s top-ranked golfer, fired a 6-under 67 and took over the top spot.

The top eight teams and two individuals from each of the three regional sites will advance to the NCAA Championships to be held May 21-24 at the University of Georgia Golf Course in Athens, Ga.

NCAA East Regional

At Auburn University Club, Auburn, Ala.

Team standings: 1. Alabama, (-18). T2. Tulane, (-8). 3. Arkansas, (-5). 4. Texas, (+4). 5. Oklahoma State, (+6). 6. North Carolina, (+7). 7. Auburn, (+7). 8. Tennessee, (+10). 9. UCLA, (+11). 10. Northwestern, (+14). 11. Virginia, (+19). 12. Notre Dame, (+20). 13. Kentucky, (+21). 14. East Tennessee State, (+23). 15. East Carolina, (+28). 16. FIU (+29), T17. Ole Miss, (+31); Chattanooga, (+31). 19. Texas State, (+32). 20. Penn State, (+35). 21. UCF, (+40). 22. James Madison, (+45). 23. Eastern Kentucky, (+77). 24. Alabama State, (+91).

Individual results (top-10 golfers only): 1. Stephanie Meadow, Alabama, (-10). T2. Jennifer Kirby, Alabama, (-6); Emma Talley, Alabama (-6); T4. Madison Opfer, Tulane, (-5); Kelly Shon, Princeton, (-5). 6. Jackie Chang, North Carolina, (-4), T7. Shu-Yin Liu, Tulsa, (-3); Madison Pressel, Texas, (-3); T9. Gemma Dryburgh, Tulane, (-2); Emily Penttila, Tulane, (-2); Emma Lavy, Arkansas, (-2); Diana Fernandez, Auburn, (-2); Erica Popson, Tennessee, (-2); Krista Puisite, Texas State, (-2)

Tulane individuals: T4. Madison Opfer, 70-69—139 (-5). T9. Emily Penttila, 68-74—142 (-2); Gemma Dryburgh, 72-70—142 (-2). T22. Maribel Lopez Porras, 73-72—145 (+1). T37. Silvia Garces, 73-74—147 (+3)