(Team photo and tournament information courtesy of Ohio State Athletics Department. Tournament scoring and statistics courtesy of Golfstat)
(Note: Due to a 30 minute, or so, weather delay the results are arriving later than usual. If my wife and I have a “Friday night, date night” tonight, I’ll have 1st round recap Saturday. If it’s business as usual around the Kohl household, I’ll have something later this evening. Go Buckeyes!)
After a brief hiatus, the Buckeyes return to South Carolina this weekend in Sunset, SC for the Clemson Invitational. This is a three round (54 holes) event with a seventeen team field. It is played at The Reserve at Lake Keowee.
The course, The Reserve at Lake Keowee is set up at 6,260 yards long and plays to a par of 72. The rating/slope are 70.8/134, a good bit tougher than the courses I play. This is a Jack Nicklaus design course.
This is an interesting course design/layout. If I interpret the layout correctly, the entire course is one, continuous clock-wise loop. More commonly, when you tee of on hole #1 (or #10, for that matter), at the end of nine holes, you are back to some proximity of the clubhouse. Not here; one you tee off on #1, you better pack a lunch because you’ll be gone for a while.
The other feature is that it really is a parkland course, set amidst the trees. This is an attractive feature to me. But then , with so many trees, you’d better be very accurate with your tee shots…
This is the typical “play 5, count 4” format. This gives teams a little wiggle room in the scoring, but not much. Additionally, teams may enter a player to participate as an Individual.
The 17 team field includes 10 teams rated in the Golfstat Top-50 rankings. The contestants (alphabetically and Golfstat ranking) are:
#42 Clemson, Columbia, #5 Florida, #6 Florida State, #8 Furman, #47 Houston, #43 Louisville, Michigan State, Mississippi State, #30 Ohio State, #24 Oklahoma, #32 Tennessee, #21 Texas, #18 Texas A&M, Tulane, UNCW, Vanderbilt
This field has 11 Top-50 teams, 6 Top-25 teams, 3 Top-10 teams. This is a very strong field; expect to see some very good golf.
The Buckeyes will tee it up with:
1 – Jaclyn Lee | So. | 73.16 avg. (19 rounds)
2 – Katja Pogacar | Sr. | 73.83 avg. (17 rounds)
3 – Niki Schroeder | So. | 74.05 avg. (19 rounds)
4 – Zoe-Beth Brake | r-Sr. | 76.00 avg. (12 rounds)
5 – Jessica Porvasnik | Sr. | 73.11 avg. (19 rounds)
IND – Rio Watanabe | r-Jr. | 74.60 avg. (15 rounds)
This is a good lineup; it looks like there may be a bit of “settling in” with the lineup. I think we may have established the Core Four (Jaclyn, Jessica, Katja, Niki) with the 5th team slot up for grabs. I think that Zoe-Beth, although her season stroke average is a bit higher than Rio’s, has been the “hotter” of the two golfers recently. Lately, Rio has made a lot of birdies, but she’s also made a lot of bogeys. I like the idea of Rio participating as Individual (additional competitive rounds) to give her an opportunity to smooth out the recent rough edges in her game.