Golf team places fourth as tourney hosts

By John Newcome

The UK women’s golf team finished in fourth place as the host of the Lady Wildcat Fall Invitational yesterday afternoon at the University Club of Kentucky.

The Cats shot 46-over-par for a 910 overall during the three-day competition, the only tournament UK will host this season.

The top-five finish was the Cats’ best showing since the John Kirk-Lady Panther Invitational in 2005-06.

Junior transfer Mallory Blackwelder tied for sixth place, shooting 70 on Saturday and 74 in yesterday’s final round to lead the No. 23 Cats.

Mallory Blackwelder, the daughter of head coach Myra Blackwelder, recorded her second consecutive top-10 individual finish of the season after placing ninth in the Mason Rudolph Invitational two weeks ago.

“My philosophy is that if a golfer is playing well and hitting on all cylinders, than you just try to keep them rolling,” Myra Blackwelder said.

UK improved 72 shots from last year’s tournament, helping the Cats finish fourth in a tournament that hosted some of the nation’s elite teams. Five teams in the tournament were in the Golfweek magazine top 50, including tournament-winner, No. 19 Alabama.

Despite UK’s turnaround from a year ago, Myra Blackwelder believes the Cats still have room to improve.

“We need to work on our wind game a little bit,” Myra Blackwelder said. “The conditions were bad today, but that’s an area we need to improve on.”

Although the conditions were windy during the final round, several Cats posted low scores throughout the tournament.

Freshman Louise Ljungstedt shot a 73 in the first round that propelled her to a 22nd finish overall. She finished the tournament 12-over-par despite making just her second career start.

The Cats continue their season when they travel to Chapel Hill, N.C., this weekend for the Tar Heel Invitational. The opening round starts Friday.