LAKELAND – Despite gusting winds for most of Monday's two rounds, Rollins College did not have to count a single score in the 80's all day, but the Tars nevertheless, find themselves in a dogfight for the top spot in this year's Lady Moc Classic. That's nothing, however, compared to the race for tournament medalist where six players will go into Tuesday's final round tied for first, and six more are within three strokes of the lead, including Florida Southern's Emily Rymer and Abbey Williams. The Moccasins also got a marvelous second round from Colleen Panosian, who hit of the best shots of the tournament so far.
In the team standings, Rollins will take a 3-stroke lead over West Florida and an 8-stroke advantage over Lynn into round three. None of the other 14 teams are closer than 11. Each of the last five teams to lead the Lady Moc Classic after the second round went on to win it, and the last time a team came from behind, it was Rollins in 2009. That was also the most recent of the Tars' tournament-record five team titles.
Rollins and West Florida were tied for first after the morning round when each team shot a 302. The Tars trimmed two shots off that number in the afternoon, while the Argonauts had a 303. Lynn had scores of 303 and 307. Those three teams had to count only one score in the 80's between them, with that being an 80 on the nose by West Florida in the afternoon. The Tars' fourth golfer, which was either Annie Dulman or Lexie Toth, had a 76, providing the difference in the standings at the end of the day.
The Tars also had two of the six co-leaders in Hally Leadbetter and Madison Lellyo, who each had scores of 147 (+3), and each matching round scores of 73 and 74. Also among that group was Sydney Legacy of Seminole State (FL), who equaled the best round of the day with a one-under par 71 in the afternoon. She was one of four golfers who had that score in round two after a 72 was the best score of round one.
Nova Southeastern's Liliana Cammisa, West Florida's Elin Olsson and Northwood's Elsa Westin were the other golfers to have a share of the lead after round two. Johanna Larsson of Florida Tech was only one stroke off the pace with a 148, grabbing seventh place with a 71 in round two, while Lauren Lamm of West Florida was two back with a 149.
Leading the way for Florida Southern were Rymer (Orlando, Fla.) and Williams (Marietta, Ga.), who had matching scores of 74-76 = 150. Rymer started the day with pars on the first 10 holes, birdies on 11 and 12, and the senior All-American really only had trouble on No. 16. Williams also had two birdies in her opening round, but the team leader in that category was fellow freshman Kolby McWilliams (Tallahassee, Fla.), who had three, but a score of 88 that wasn't counted.
Rymer and Williams then went out and duplicated their scores in the afternoon, with junior Kit Creighton (Buffalo, N.Y.) their third counter again. She knocked three strokes off her morning round with a 77. Redshirt junior Emma Marlatt (Chapel Hill, N.C.) was the Mocs' fourth counter in both rounds with an 82 and an 81. That allowed Florida Southern to post identical scores of 310 for each round, putting the Moccasins in ninth place overall. They stand only seven strokes out of fourth, and are 18 behind first-place Rollins.
The Florida Southern "B" team got a strong showing from junior Colleen Panosian (Smyrna, Ga.), who fired a career-best 72 in the second round. That included an eagle on the par-four No. 11 when she dropped one in from the fairway from over 160 yards away. That gave Panosian a total score of 156. Sophomore Britta Bernth (Greenville, Mich.) was the "B" team's #2 golfer with a 160, while redshirt sophomore Shannon McKew (Cockeysville, Md.) and junior Emily Tofaute (Louisville, Ky.) had scores of 169.
The first day of the Lady Moc Classic also saw a hole-in-one by Saint Leo's Marie Coors on the 147-yard par-3 No. 14. It was the first ace in the two years the tournament has been played at Grasslands, and the first in the tournament overall since 2008 when West Florida's Meaghan Gulliksen did it at Cleveland Heights.
The final round of the Lady Moc Classic gets underway Tuesday morning with a shotgun start at 8 a.m.