Mahon leads Arkansas in first round

Jump to day one results LUBBOCK, Texas – The 20th-ranked University of Arkansas is in 12th place after an opening round 300 at the 2005 Central Region Championship in Lubbock, Texas, Thursday. Arkansas struggled as a team in the first couple of holes but rebounded turning in an 11-over 300. “We didn’t start well,” acknowledged head coach Kelley Hester, “but we hung in there. I’m really proud of Courtney (Mahon). She was solid all day.” Mahon, a Topeka, Kan., native, counted an even par 72 leading the Lady’Backs. She was even through the first five holes but gave up a stroke number six. She got it back on seven and played to one-under with a birdie on the par-five ninth hole. Mahon, who finished the day tied for eighth overall, stayed at one-under through the 10th hole but broke even on 11 with a bogey on the par-four. She remained even for the final seven holes. The first flight of golfers were set to tee off at 7:30 a.m., but fog delayed the start more than one hour. When the team’s finally teed off, temperatures hovered in the mid-40s. The clouds began to burn off as the Lady’Backs approached the clubhouse but the winds also picked up changing conditions again. “The conditions were almost ideal for good scoring this morning,” said Hester. “It’s much easier to play this course in the morning, even with clouds and cooler temperatures, then to face that Texas wind in the afternoon.” Redshirt freshman Stacy Lewis turned in a plus-three 75 picking up those unwanted three strokes on the final hole of the day. After hitting her second shot in a bunker, Lewis punched out onto the green and two-putted for a triple. Juniors Amanda McCurdy and Lindsey Hinshaw both struggled out of the gate and each rebounded with McCurdy counting a 76, and Hinshaw a 77 to finish the day. McCurdy, an El Dorado, Ark., native, was three-over after the first two holes but played nearly even, picking up just one stroke, over the final 16 holes. McCurdy suffered with several near-misses on the putting greens but counted a solid 76 for the Lady’Backs. Hinshaw had a similar start opening a three-over in the first two holes but she also rebounded finishing the day at plus-five. The Missouri City, Texas, native tied her fourth-best round at Arkansas Thursday. Hot Springs, Ark, senior Gene Johnson struggled in her first look at the Rawls Course carding a first round 81 for the Lady’Backs. “It was unfortunate to lose three shots on the late hole and it is important to realize we can play well on this course. If the SEC Championship taught us anything it’s that every shot matters. We know that we have two more rounds to play and tomorrow will be an equalizer.” The Lady Razorbacks flip start times teeing it up at 11:50 a.m., in second round action. The later tee time will most likely have Arkansas facing more wind and warmer temperatures than in first round play. Twenty-first-ranked Texas leads the Central Region after one round of golf. The Longhorns carded a 290 and are just 10 strokes ahead of Arkansas. They are followed by No. 18 Missouri and No. 14 New Mexico who are tied for second at 291. Number 28 Texas A&M is third with a 293, followed by No. 3 Auburn at 294, No. 33 Purdue with 295, No. 4 Arizona State at 196 and No. 12 LSU and No. 22 Tulsa tied with 298. Regional action continues Friday and Saturday at the Rawls Course. For more information log on to LADYBACKS.COM.