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Host Bulldogs In Inland Empire Title Hunt

Sept. 25, 2006

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SPOKANE, Wash. - Gonzaga University got a solid showing from its top three golfers Monday and stand third after 36 holes of the Inland Empire Women's Intercollegiate women's golf tournament at Hangman Valley Golf Course.

Mary Kate Morgan shot 72-76 for a 36-hole score of 148 that left her tied for fourth. Sarah Sheffield, moved into the No. 1 spot for the Bulldogs for this tournament, had 73-76 for 149 and a tie for sixth. Lacey Jo Manwaring had a 77-75 for 152 to tie for 10th heading into Tuesday's final 18 holes.

The Bulldogs, who led after the first round, are in third place at 608 behind the University of Idaho at 600 and Eastern Washington University at 602.

Marli Mikulecky of EWU is the 36-hole leader at 142, shooting rounds of 72-70 over the 6,150-yard, par 72 Hangman Valley course. Her 70 was the best round of the day - she had six birdies in the round - as only two other golfers broke par. Amanda Jacobs of Idaho and Kelly Gillum of Montana State University each shot 71, Jacobs in the opening round and Gillum in the second round.

"We played extremely well today," Gonzaga head coach Robert Gray said. "Both Mary Kate and Sarah each had one hole in each round that really kept them from shooting even better. Lacey Jo was also a couple of holes away from being right there with the other two."

Morgan had a triple bogey on par 5 16th hole in the first round, while Sheffield had a double-bogey on the par 3 seventh hole in the second round. Manwaring had three double-bogey sixes for the day.

"If we can eliminate that one bad hole we can climb right back into this thing," Gray said of Tuesday's final round. "Six strokes aren't that much for Mary Kate to make up if she can come back with a solid round."

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the day came from No. 5 player Elizabeth Jarrett who opened with a 75, came back with an 84 and stood tied for 29th at 159.

"Elizabeth was big for us," Gray said of the sophomore from Bend. Ore. "To have your No. 5 golfer be one of the top four scorers that shows she really stepped up. We'll need that again on Tuesday if we're going to have a chance for the team title."

Gonzaga's opening-round 297 was the first time in 13 rounds dating back to last March the Bulldogs had cracked 300, Gonzaga shooting a final-round 294 at the Northern Illinois University Springlake Invitational played in Sebring, Fla.

"I hope Monday was the springboard we were looking for to carry us through the rest of the fall season and into next spring," Gray said. "I was encouraged by what I saw today."

Tuesday's final round starts at 7:30 a.m.