Cnops matches school record as UNCG concludes play at Cougar Classic
CHARLESTON, S.C. – UNCG freshman Fanny Cnops fired a final-round 72 and tied the school record for best 54-hole score with a 216 as the Spartans concluded play at the College of Charleston Cougar Classic on Tuesday at Yeamans Hall Club.
As a squad, the Spartans enjoyed a strong afternoon in the 22-team event, shooting a team tournament-best 298 to finish 19th overall at 915 (305-312-298). Nine teams which ranked in the Golfstat.com final 2011 top 25 participated in the tournament, with LSU (848) taking home the championship.
"I was really pleased with our play during the final round," UNCG coach Emily Marron said. "Considering how poorly we played on Monday, Tuesday was a nice way to finish. We came in ahead of Wisconsin, which is a top-50 program, and we should have some good momentum for the rest of the fall."
Playing in her first collegiate tournament, Cnops, the 2011 German Ladies Amateur champion, finished in a two-way tie for 20th by shooting even par over three rounds. After opening with a 75 on Sunday, Cnops carded a 3-under par 69 on Monday. Her even-par score during Tuesday's final round helped her match the school record set by current Spartan junior Courtney Taylor at the SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational in April 2010.
"Fanny's play was pretty impressive considering it was her first tournament," said Marron. "This was one of the strongest fields we'll see all year, and she fit right in. I noticed over three rounds that she seems to perform at her best when she's being tested. She's very competitive, and her play on Monday impacted the team and helped everyone play well today."
Cnops enjoyed an interesting start to her final round. Teeing off on No. 13, she bogeyed the first two holes but rebounded with a double-eagle on the par-5 15th. She couldn't maintain that momentum, however, as she bogeyed 16 and 17 to fall to 1-over for the round.
"I think the double-eagle startled her a bit," said Marron. "It took her a few holes to recover. She hit driver off the tee and a 6-iron from about 180 yards away to hole out. I heard cheering and screaming from a few holes away, and I knew she had done something impressive. But to connect for one of the toughest shots in golf while playing in your first tournament … that's pretty special."
The newcomer steadied her play over the next six holes. After three straight pars, Cnops birdied No. 4 to get back to even for the day. Two more pars followed on Nos. 5 and 6, but back-to-back bogeys on seven and eight put her at plus-2 for the afternoon.
Again, Cnops rebounded and recorded consecutive birdies on Nos. 9 and 10, evening her round once more. She finished her impressive play with pars on 11 and 12.
Cnops wasn't the only Spartan to enjoy a successful final round. Senior Begona Sarabia shot a 1-over par 73, matching her best round of 2010-11. Sarabia finished tournament play tied for 92nd at 235 (78-84-73).
Fellow senior Ana Lucia Martinez shot a 76 on Tuesday, leaving her tied for 89th at 234 (77-81-76).
Taylor finished 85th overall after a final-round 77 left her at 231 (76-78-77) for the tournament. Freshman Berglind Bjornsdottir shot 78 on Tuesday to finish 111th.
The Spartans next participate in the Great Smokies Intercollegiate, Sept. 19-20, in Waynesville, N.C.
19 UNCG 305-312=617
T20 Fanny Cnops 75 69 72 216
85 Courtney Taylor 76 78 77 231
T89 Ana Lucia Martinez 77 81 76 234
T92 Begona Sarabia 78 84 73 235
111 Berglind Bjornsdottir 77 91 78 246
- UNCG -