HANAHAN, S.C. - Momentum continued into the opening round of the season as the Mississippi State women's golf team fired a six-under-par 282 in the first round of the Cougar Classic behind junior Ally McDonald's school-record 6-under-par 66.
Without a tournament title since 2004, Ginger Brown-Lemm's squad produced the third-lowest 18-hole score in school history.
"The team had a very solid day today," fourth-year MSU coach Brown-Lemm said. "We talked about being patient, this course rewards that. Amazingly enough, we left several shots out there, maybe some nerves, but overall we are off to a great start."
McDonald is tied for first after matching the second-lowest score in the Cougar Classic's 11-year history. The Fulton, Miss., native got off to a fantastic start with birdies on the first two holes of the season and finished the day with seven birdies overall.
Senior Mary Langdon Gallagher finished tied for fourth by setting a new career best with a three-under-par 69 for MSU's second-best team score. The veteran notched a birdie-par-bogey-par finish to the front nine followed by three birdies on the back.
Rica Tse with a one-over-par 73 and made her third career eagle on hole 15. Tied for 25th for the event, Tse capped off her first round posting eagle-par-par-birdie on the final four holes.
Freshman debutante Ji Eun Baik made a fabulous introduction to her college career with a two-over-par 74. Baik struggled on the front nine but produced a birdie and eight pars after the turn. Rounding out the MSU scorecard was freshman Jessica Peng with a 78.
South Carolina and Clemson each hold a share of second heading into the second round as both posted three-under-par 285 rounds. Brittany Marchand of North Carolina State is the competitor tied with McDonald for the individual lead.
Second-round action will begin at 7:45 a.m. CST Monday, with MSU set to tee off alongside Clemson and Wisconsin on hole one.
Live stats and post-round results will be available through Hailstate.com.
Updates will be provided on the Mississippi State women's golf Twitter account, @HailStateWG, and Facebook page, facebook.com/HailStateWG.
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Mississippi State and Southern Miss played evenly for most of Sunday's match in Hattiesburg, but three USM goals in the final 15 minutes proved the difference as the Bulldogs dropped a 3-0 decision.
The Bulldogs return home from a four-match road trip 2-3 on the season. Southern Miss improved to 4-1-1.
"It was a pretty even game through most of the match. Both teams had chances, but neither team was able to really dominate in the first half. We started well in the second half, but all the injuries and illnesses we've had caught up to us and they were able to score late. We tried to push forward looking for the equalizer, and unfortunately, they were able to score another one," Aaron Gordon said. "We have to try and get healthy and get back to work to get ready for Furman and Jackson State to come to town this weekend."
Mississippi State's C.J. Winship made eight saves in the contest as she faced 20 USM shots. Brittany Taylor proved equally tough in goal, halting all 10 of the Dawgs' on-goal chances.
Both teams traded scoring chances, but neither squad could break through until the 75th minute when Danica Roberts scored her seventh goal of the season off passes from Conner McKie and Ashley Johnson.
With the Bulldogs pushed up the field looking for the equalizer, Missy Wentz capitalized in the 80th minute to extend the lead to 2-0. Anya Koren netted the final score in the 83rd minute.
Senior Elisabeth Sullivan paced the Bulldogs as she took three shots and put all of them on target.
The Memphis native had a school-record six-match goal streak stopped.
Southern Miss out-shot the Bulldogs 20-15 thanks to a 12-7 edge in the second half. MSU put 10 of its shots on frame, while USM managed 11 on-target opportunities.
Mississippi State led 4-2 in corner kick opportunities.
State returns home to host the Bulldog Classic in the non-conference finale. State plays the second contest each day, challenging Furman at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Jackson State at 1 p.m. Sunday.
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