Kentucky mens and womens golf finish first spring events of season

Aaron Benjamin

UK mens and womens golf teams both saw action from Feb. 28-March 2 as they kicked off the spring season.  

The womens team headed to Hilton Head, South Carolina to compete in the 10th annual Darius Rucker Intercollegiate tournament, featuring 17 collegiate programs from around the country. The event was held at Long Cove Golf Club in Hilton Head. The men on the other hand, headed out west to Henderson, Nevada for the Lake Las Vegas Intercollegiate tournament. The event was held at Reflection Bay Golf Club.  

The women started off their weekend by practicing at Congaree Golf Club in Ridgeland, South Carolina on the Saturday prior to the tournament. On Monday, Feb. 28, they kicked off competition. The Cats ended the day 19-over par, tied for 16th place with the South Carolina Gamecocks. They held an overall team score of 303.  

Two Texas teams led the field in Baylor and Texas. They were followed by Alabama, then Wake Forest and LSU, who were both tied for fourth.  

Individually for the Cats, junior Jensen Castle and Dayton, Ohio native Marissa Wenzler both scored a 75 for the first round and were tied for 47th. Maria Villanueva finished tied for 55th, shooting a 76. Fifth year senior Rikke Svejgaard totaled 77, putting herself at a tie for 60th. Lastly, tied for 82 was sophomore Laney Frye.  

In round two, the team would finish tied for 13th with Northwestern, a three-position improvement from the previous day. On Tuesday, Wake Forest would be in front of the pack with Arizona and Baylor second and third.  

For UK, Villanueva would lead for individual performance. She shot a 73, placing her tied for 38th overall. Next would be Frye, scoring 69 to put her tied for 42nd overall. Svejgaard would total 73, tying her teammate for 42nd. Lastly for UK, Castle would not follow suit from her previous round, tallying an 80, tying her for 75th. 

The Wildcats would come back on Wednesday to finish out tournament play. Kentucky would end the day and the tournament 11th overall, improving two spots from its day two position. Collectively, the Cats would shoot a 290 on day three of action to give them a three-day total of 886.  

Individually in the third round for Kentucky, Frye led, shooting a 68. She was followed by the duo of Villanueva and Castle, who each shot a 73. Svejgaard would come it at 76 with Wenzler shooting an 83. Kentucky had one representative in the top-20 overall club in Frye.  

The men would follow the same schedule, beginning round one of their tournament on Monday. 

The Cats would record a T6 finish as a team overall after one round. 

Individually, two-time Lexington City champion Jacob Cook would join his teammate, redshirt senior Garrett Wood, at the top for UK, tying for 12th overall on the day shooting a pair of 70’s. Junior Alex Goff shot a 74, winding up tied for 43rd  with his teammate Campbell Kremer. Redshirt junior Jay Kirchdorfer scored 83 and his position matched his score.  

The Wildcats got back on the greens Tuesday, starting their second day of the tournament. Kentucky would place fifth overall after 18 more holes 

Leading overall at the end of day two would be West Virginia, with a combined two-day score of 565. UAB ended in second with 567, Utah in third with 569, Little Rock with 571, and rounding out the top five was Kentucky with 572.  

Individually for the Cats, Wood shot a 68, slotting in fourth overall on the day. Cook would match his day one score of 70, tying for eighth. Kremer also shot a 70, T22. The pair of Goff and Kirchdorfer both shot 76, with Goff tying for 47th and Kirchdorfer in 81st 

Kentucky would come back Wednesday for its third and final day of the tournament. The Cats would finish sixth overall to end the tournament.  

Overall for UK, Wood would again be at the top, tied for sixth, shooting a 209. Cook, shooting a 210, tied for eighth. Kremer, with a 216, placed T25. Goff, who totaled a 225, came in tied for 45th. And finally, Kirchdorfer would shoot 234 and secure 79th overall.  

Next up for the Cats, the womens team will take a short break before they head west to Mesa, Arizona to compete in the three-day Clover Cup tournament, set to be held at the Longbow Golf Club.  

As for the men, they will have the rest of the week off before they travel down to Pinehurst, North Carolina to compete in the Wake Forest Invitational at Pinehurst No. 2.