KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – An improvement day for the Northern Arizona University golf team as the Lumberjacks bettered their score in the second round of the 2016 Palmetto Intercollegiate by 13 strokes compared to yesterday's first round, going for a 13-over-par 313 team mark today.
While the Lumberjacks didn't register their best score of the fall Monday, they did tighten the screws a bit and gave themselves some momentum heading into tomorrow's third and final round from Kiawah Island, S.C. As it stands now, the 'Jacks moved up to 18th-place with a two-round tally of 63-over 639.
The leading scorer for NAU today was true freshman Loren Skibba, who engineered a 4-over 76 mark. That score tied a collegiate personal-best in her short NAU career. Compared to yesterday's 13-over 85 score, Skibba managed to shave nine full strokes from round-to-round.
Kim Cifuentes also looked strong at certain points during the second set of 18, going 1-over 37 on the front nine before penciling in double bogey-bogey on holes 17 and 18 to close out the round at 6-over 78 (16-over 160). Cifuentes make some mental strides, though, as four double bogeys during the first round certainly didn't shake the senior from Gilbert, Ariz., as she only recorded one of those Monday.
Cifuentes is currently tied on the individual leaderboard with junior teammate Sierra Bezdicek at 74th place. Bezdicek got off to the hottest start of the day, registering consecutive birdies on holes four and five before finishing the round at 8-over 80.
Junior Kaitlyn Saum and sophomore Sofia Anokhina also logged scores during the second round of action, with Saum finishing at 7-over 79 (24-over 166) and Anokhina ending her day at 11-over 83 (18-over 162).
It should be noted that while this wasn't the best performance from the Lumberjacks, they did show major progression from rounds one to two. In round one, the team tallied four triple bogeys, 10 double bogeys and just four birdie putts. Today, they cut their triple bogeys in half, lessened the double bogeys to just six and counteracted those with six birdies.
The third and final round from the Palmetto Intercollegiate gets underway tomorrow with an 8:45 a.m. ET shotgun start (5:30 Flagstaff time).
If you would like to follow along with live stats, here is the link: Palmetto Intercollegiate Live Stats.