JONESBORO, ARK. – The UTEP women’s golf team led from start to finish in claiming its first tournament title since 2011 on Tuesday afternoon. The Miners presided over the eight-team field at the Lady Redwolves Classic in Jonesboro, Ark.
UTEP assembled three outstanding rounds, finishing with a 54-hole tally of 891 (293-299-299). The Miners won by 20 strokes with Arkansas State “A” taking second place (300-315-296-911) and Arkansas State “B” landing in third place (308-303-306-917).
UTEP’s 891 marked its best tournament score since shooting 888 at the Conference USA Championships in April of 2015, and the Miners compiled three sub-300 rounds for the first time since October of 2010 at the Price’s Give ‘Em Five Intercollegiate in Las Cruces. This is the Miners’ first tournament championship since May of 2011, when they won C-USA and advanced to NCAA Regionals.
“High winds made the conditions really difficult today,” UTEP coach Jere Pelletier said. “The team handled it very well. It’s one of our best scores ever and it’s the result of the girls buying into what we’re trying to teach in practice.”
Sophomore Lily Downs shot career-low 71’s in the first and second round Monday and maintained her first-place standing on Tuesday. She concluded the tournament with a two-over-par 218 (71-71-76), four strokes better than runner-up finishers Katie Warren (74-75-73-222) and Kirsten Garner (78-71-73-222) of William Woods University and Arkansas State, respectively.
“She’s really getting to be a good player,” Pelletier said. “Any time you shoot under 220 in a college tournament, you’re playing good golf. To see her do it as a sophomore gets me excited about what she can accomplish over the next few years.”
Four other Miners finished between fifth and 12th place. June Ting was fifth (74-76-74-224), Alisa Rodriguez eighth (79-77-71-227), and Crystal Wu (73-79-78-230) and Sofia Castiello (75-75-80-230) tied for 12th.
The vastly improved Miners have now played in four tournaments this season with a championship and two runner-up showings.
They’ll next be in action Oct. 30-Nov. 1 at the Little Rock Classic in Hot Springs Village, Ark.