By Marissa Masano
The Youngstown State University women’s golf team continued its success at the Roseann Schwartz Invitational as a strong final round finish secured its victory. The team overcame a five-stroke deficit and claimed its second victory of the season.
The lady ‘Guins posted a score of 308 in the first round at the Mill Creek Golf Course in Boardman on Sept. 23.
The second day of competition opened up with a second-round score of 291, which tied for the eighth-lowest, 18-hole performance in school history. The two-round team total of 599 tied for the seventh-lowest, 36-hole team score in program history.
For head coach Nate Miklos, this year’s team has the potential to put together a special season.
“We have a really strong team this year. This is probably the most depth we’ve had in my time at YSU and seeing our team just continuing to play at this level and to post those types of scores just tells me we have the capability to go out and put together great rounds everytime we go out,” Miklos said.
During Sunday’s final session, the lady ‘Guins were five strokes behind Cleveland State University and Indiana State University.
However, the team overcame its first-round deficit with an invitational-low, second-round score of 291. Cleveland State finished as the runner-up with a two-round team total of 600.
The highest Penguin finisher was freshman Neeranuch Prajunpanich. Prajunpanich placed third in her third collegiate event. On Saturday, the freshman scored 73; on Sunday, she finished with 72 to compile a two-round final score of 145.
Her second-round score was tied for the second-lowest, only trailing behind University of Detroit Mercy’s junior Ariel Chang and Cleveland State’s sophomore Mandie Ruminski. On Sunday, Prajunpanich’s score of 72 featured 13 pars and three birdies. After completing the invitational, the true freshman tied for second in birdies with eight.
Two other Penguins finished in the top 10 on the individual leaderboard. Senior Maddie Smithco improved from last season’s performance at the Roseann Schwartz Invitational. Last season, Smithco tied for 11th with a two-round score of 153. This season, Smithco tied for sixth with a two-round total of 150.
Smithco’s final round total of 72, comprised 10 pars and four birdies. The senior finished the invitational ranking second in par 4 scoring and third in birdies with seven.
The final Penguin to finish in the top 10 was junior Lizzie Saur. Saur finished tied for ninth with a two-round final score of 154. The junior’s first-round score was 79 and her second-round score of 72 included 13 pars and three birdies.
Saur finished in the top five for a par 4 scoring and ranked third in pars with 23 for the day.
The lady ‘Guins will continue their fall season Oct. 1 and 2, competing in Niagara’s Purple Eagles Invitational at Diamond Hawk Golf Course in Cheektowaga, New York. For Smithco, the next invitational is another opportunity for herself and the team.
“I want to keep the game going that I’ve had. I’ve had a good season so far. Just stay focused on what I can do and not get ahead of myself and think about trying to win another event individually or as a team. Just do what I can and try to help the team the best that I can,” Smithco said.
To watch the invitational, check out ESPN+. For stats, highlights and more, visit ysusports.com.