Parker eighth entering final round at NCAA II Nationals

Kaitlin Parker

May 15, 2009

FINDLAY, Ohio - Western Washington University's Kaitlin Parker (Sr., Marysville/Marysville-Pilchuck) is in sole possession of eighth place in medalist play entering Saturday's final round at the NCAA Division II National Women's Golf Championships taking place at the 6,219-yard Findlay Country Club.

"Our initial goal was the top 10, but with how she's played, that's been adjusted a little bit," said Western coach Bo Stephan. "My advice to her will be to keep doing what she's been doing."

Parker played 36 holes Friday after rain postponed Thursday's second round. She shot 3-over par 75 in the morning and 7-over 79 in the afternoon for a 54-hole total of 230. At one point, Parker was tied for second, just one stroke behind the leader.

"Physically, she was fine with the 36 holes," Stephan said. "But mentally it makes for a stressful day with all the grinding you have to do."

Tied for third place following Friday's second round, Parker was all alone in third with four holes to go in round three as she began her final nine of the day with three pars and two birdies.

But a double-bogey, bogey, triple-bogey, par finish moved her down to eighth, nine shots behind the leader, Lyndsay McBride from Indianapolis at 5-over 221 (75-72). Nova Southeastern's Sandra Changkija is second at 9-over 225 (74-75).

"It wasn't until her 35th hole of the tournament, that she really had a decision to make whether to layup or go for it," said Stephan of the triple bogey. "The rough here is so unforgiving."

Parker shot an opening-round, 4-over 76 on Wednesday, and was in a six-way tie for ninth place.

Nova Southeastern (923) holds a 10-shot lead over Indianapolis (933) in the team standings. Rollins (934) is third in the 12-team field.

Parker tied for fifth place last week at the NCAA II West Super Regional, the Vikings also finishing fifth as a team.

During the regular season, Parker averaged 77.6 strokes per round, placing among the top three in five tournaments with two firsts, two seconds and one third.

Last year, Parker tied for 29th at nationals after transferring from Skagit Valley CC.