May 10, 2013
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN — The Auburn women's golf team played its way up the NCAA East Regional leaderboard Friday with a round that made a tough week a little easier.
The Tigers' 4-under 284 was the best score of the season and was 15 shots better than Thursday's opening round, and put the Tigers in position to claim one of the top eight regional spots that will win a ticket to the NCAA Tournament at the University of Georgia May 21-24.
Auburn will likely tee off the final round of the East Regional at 7:30 a.m. Saturday at the Auburn University Club.
Friday's round was a bounce-back performance over Thursday's day on the course. And a bounce-back performance emotionally for a team that learned this week that its coach, Kim Evans, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
"We've had hard year with a lot of not-expected situations," said Marta Sanz, who led Auburn with a 68.
Evans is not coaching the Tigers this week.
"I'm happy for Coach she can see a good number on that scoreboard even though she's not out here," said student assistant coach Danielle Downey. "We got ourselves in a position where everything can happen tomorrow."
Sanz 's 68 was nine shots better than her Thursday scorecard. All five Auburn golfers shot better than or equaled their Thursday score.
"We should be up there. We came around," Sanz said.
Diana Fernandez had a second consecutive 71 to lead Auburn with a two-day 142. Sanz is at 145, followed by Carlie Yadloczky is at 146, Jamie Yun at 150 and Victoria Trapani at 159.
Yun had the best score of her college career.
"She's a walk-on freshman and shoots 73 in regionals, under pressure, trying to move on to nationals. I'm just so proud of her," said Downey.
Downey said she was happy the Tigers came back from their uneven first round.
"I think they put too much pressure and too many expectations on themselves," she said. "They were all trying to be a little too perfect. I told them after the round yesterday, the best scores were in the morning, and we have the morning. 'Take the pressure off and be yourself and play the golf course.' They showed up this morning and they were different golfers, they were different people. They went out and they weren't scared. They were aggressive. This is how they should have played all this year."
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