Hunter leads NMU women golfers

By Journal Sports Staff

GEORGETOWN, Ky. — Maya Hunter shot the third-best round in Northern Michigan University women’s golf history to lead her Wildcats team to an eighth-place finish at the Saginaw Valley State University Spring Intercollegiate tournament on Sunday.

The NMU men finished in 14th place in their meet held at the Cherry Blossom Golf Club in Georgetown, Kentucky, located 400 miles almost due south of the Cardinals’ campus between Saginaw and Bay City.

The Northern teams remain in Kentucky for another meet this weekend, the Klash in Kentucky to be held Saturday and Sunday at Perry Park Golf Resort in Perry Park.

Here is a rundown of the NMU teams at the SVSU meet:

Hunter shoots under par

Hunter, a junior, shot a 1-under-par 71 in her second round Sunday, the same score she shot in last season’s NCAA Division II East Regional as the third-best 18-hole round in program history.

The NMU women moved up three spots from 11th after the first day in this 14-team field.

Northern as a team improved 27 shots from their opening round as their 24-over 312 was the best score in the field that day.

Overall, the Wildcats shot 75-over with rounds of 339 and 312 for 651, four strokes behind seventh-place Trevecca Nazarene and one stroke ahead of former GLIAC member Northwood.

After an opening round 13-over-par 85, Hunter not only showed the greatest improvement of 14 strokes in her second round, but her follow-up round was the lowest score of the day by three strokes as she finished in a tie for 10th place with a 12-over 156.

Hunter went from seven pars, no birdies and 11 holes with a bogey or worse in her opening round, to three birdies, 13 pars and and just two bogeys on day 2.

Martina Hicks of McKendree won the individual title with 149 on rounds of 73 and 76, while L. Marie Schumacher of Tiffin was runner-up with 150 on 74 and 76.

McKendree won the team title with 613 on rounds of 296 and 317, while Ferris State was second with 625, one stroke ahead of SVSU and Davenport.

An analysis of NMU’s scoring showed them playing par-3s at 30-over-par (3.75 average), par-4s at plus-58 (4.58 average) and par-5s the fourth-best in the field at plus-18 (5.45). The Wildcats had seven birdies and 83 pars.

Northern’s second-lowest scorer was Alyssa Yaggie with a 19-over 163 on rounds of 81 and 82 for a tie for 35th place.

Maggie Pietila was next with 165 on 87 and 78, while Hailey Bolander had 167 with 86 and 81. Payton Donnelly shot 175 with 89 and 86, while teammate Payton Dube competed as an individual with 177 on 86 and 91.

Yun leads NMU men

Senior Eric Yun led the Wildcat men with a 2-over-par 146 on rounds of 72 and 74 to tie for 23rd, though he only finished 12 strokes behind winner Ben Keil of Indianapolis, who shot a 10-under 134 on rounds of 66 and 68.

Johan Widal of Tiffin was runner-up with 64-71–135.

Northern’s men totaled 600 on rounds of 295 and 305, 36 strokes behind team winner Indianapolis with 276-288–564.

With most of the GLIAC also participating, Ferris was third with 576, Wayne State fifth with 582, Davenport tied for sixth with 585, Wisconsin-Parkside tied for eighth with 588, SVSU 15th with 601, Purdue Northwest tied for 16th with 602 and Lake Superior State 20th in the 21-team field with 643.

Yun recorded three birdies, two on par-4s and one on a par-5, while notching an eagle in both rounds on the 18th hole. He played par-4s at even par — sixth best in the field — par-5s at 4-under, four strokes behind the winner, while his two eagles were second best in the field.

Russel Sprecher was No. 2 for NMU with 73 and 77 for 150 to tie for 49th as he had a team-high six birdies, second-most 20 pars while playing par-5s at 2-under.

Next was Tyler Annala with 74-78–152 in a tie for 65th, while Arthur Ylitalo had 77-76–153 and tied for 75th. Both played the par-5s at 4-under as Ylitalo matched Sprecher’s 20 pars and Annala matched Sprecher’s six birdies. Ylitalo also eagled the par-5 third hole.

Rounding out Northern’s lineup was Walter Ylitalo with 76-79–155 and Brady Badker with 76-79–155 as they tied for 88th.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.


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