Eight Iowa Conference championships
CEDAR FALLS— Sophomore Kelsey Van Tasell (Pella) fired a career-best 77 to crack the top five and lead Central College to fourth place after the first round of the Iowa Conference women’s golf tournament Friday.
Van Tasell shot a 5-over-par 77 at the Pheasant Ridge Golf Course, slicing three strokes off her previous best, and is tied for fifth place. She is five strokes behind the leader, Jennifer Gaffney of Simpson College.
“Kelsey played really well and it’s good to see her have success at the league tournament,” coach Tim Wilkinson said. “Hopefully we’ll see her build on it and stay consistent.”
Central shot 332. Tourney favorite Wartburg College, which has won the past five titles, is first at 307. Luther College is second at 317 with Simpson third at 328. Loras College trails the Dutch in fifth at 334.
“We didn’t make enough putts today, which is a little disappointing since we played this course last week” Wilkinson said.
Taylor Hill (sophomore, Treynor) shot 83 and is 14th while Ashley Smith (senior, Johnsburg, Ill.) is tied for 16th at 85. Chelsey Shuey (freshman, Ames) shot a personal-best 87 and Emily Fisher (freshman, Wapello) had 94.
“Chelsey did well, breaking 90 for the first time this year,” Wilkinson said. “Taylor is still struggling with her strength as she recovers from being ill.
“We need to see everyone play well on the same day,” Wilkinson said. “The players weren’t satisfied with how they did as a team today.”
Central, which has three golfers in the tournament for the first time, has finished second the past four years.
The 72-hole tournament continues with another round at Pheasant Ridge Saturday, starting at 9 a.m. The final 36 holes are played next Friday and Saturday at Central’s home course, the Bos Landen Golf Club in Pella.
"It’s nice that the tournament is four days,” Wilkinson said. “It gives us a chance to go out tomorrow and improve as a team to put ourselves in a better position for next weekend.”