Wheeling, Virginia – Throughout the fall season, the University of Wheeling women’s golf team has been facing some of the region’s top teams as they prepare for the 2022 Mountain East Conference (MEC) tournament. On Saturday, the Cardinals begin their final adjustment before the MEC Championship when they head to the Eagle Invitational hosted by Ashland University. The Cardinals have dealt with rough weather throughout the fall season, playing only four rounds total, and hoping for a clean weekend in their final call of the year.
Last time, the Cardinals faced the Michael Corbett Classic in Erie, Pennsylvania, and dealt with inclement weather throughout the tournament. After passing the first round, it rained Monday morning and the second round of the championship ended up being cancelled. However, it was a strong day for the Cardinals as they posted a season best result of 325 through 18 holes. It was five strokes short of their previous best, set during the first round of the Charleston Invitational, when they fired a combined 330, as they continue to show they can bring their scores down.
Leading the way again was a senior Emily Holzopfel, who finished the first round with a total of 77. She took home the MEC Women’s Golfer of the Week award for the second week in a row as she placed fifth in the event. After a slow start, hitting a double bogey and bogey in the first two holes, Holzopfel battled three birds and 10 classes to finish at +5 for the event. This was the second best-five in a row in the tournament as she went on to prepare and defend her title at the MEC Women’s Golfer of the Year.
Behind Holzopfel, two other Cardinals put in the best efforts of the season as the biggest Zoila Herrera and demanded Mara Johnson He finished the tie in 16th and 21st places, respectively. Zoila Herrera She set a low bar for the season when she fired 81 in the event with two Jets and 10 pars in what was an effort to bounce back after falling ill in the first two championships of the year. Johnson collected the best 82s of her career on her third collegiate invite and got the best start from the squad, firing on equal footing on the first hole of the day. Both players will be a huge part of the Cardinals’ success in the MEC tournaments.
The team’s performance was encouraging for the Cardinals as they put in their best performances against some of the same teams they faced in their first tournament of the season. They jumped one place from that inaugural tournament and lowered their score by 19 strokes from that first call of the year. Welling is looking to drop their scores again in this final synthesis and look for consistency against strong regional opponents.
The Eagle Invitational will be played at the beautiful Ashland Golf Course in Ashland, Ohio. The 73-foot, 18-hole course features rolling terrain, tree-line fairways, gorgeous greens, and stunning views. Golfers will be challenged throughout the afternoon as they constantly try to hit the greens and avoid the trees and sand traps placed throughout the course.
This will be the Cardinal’s first trip to Ashland Golf Course since the 2015-16 season when they played at the same Eagle International. Wheeling finished second among 11 competing teams and had two golfers ranked 10th in the tournament. Former Cardinal Cassie Frazier led the way for the Cardinals, scoring 152 teams, while teammate Kaneda Mills added 160 points during the two-day tournament.
The first day of the Eagle Invitational kick-off is scheduled for 9 a.m. at Ashland Golf Club. Stay tuned with wucardinals.com throughout the day for updates and a full recap of Day One events.