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Women’s golf looks forward to upcoming WIAC Championship

October 2, 2014

The UW-River Falls women’s golf team placed seventh of 14 teams last weekend at the UW-Steven’s Point-hosted Mad Dawg Invitational.

The WIAC championship is this coming weekend. And of the nine women playing, only four will go on to the championship. If the team wins at the WIAC Championship, they move on to nationals, which is held in the spring.

“We’re doing fine,” said Head Coach Matt Cranston. “We just had a tournament last week. We were seventh out of 14, so we’re doing fine.”

Cranston has been a coach for the women’s golf team for five years now. He is an alumnus of UWRF and played golf and lettered for the Falcons in 1983 and 1984 while the men’s program still existed.

He has coached one player to All-WIAC honors, Gillian McDonald, who was named to the team after the 2012 and 2013 seasons, according to uwrfsports.com. McDonald, a junior at UWRF is from New Brighton, Minnesota, and is one of UWRF’s strongest women’s golf players. She placed sixth in the 2013 WIAC championship with 248 strokes.

“She’s our number one player, hands down. She also played hockey a few years here too, very good athlete,” Cranston said.

The first day of the Mad Dawg Invitational was on Saturday, Sept. 27. They played the first day of the tournament at Steven’s Point Country Club. McDonald shot a 93 during the first round.

The UWRF team tied with Cardinal Stritch and UW-Steven’s Point for ninth place at the end of the day. UW-Stout led with a score of 332.

UWRF shot 13 strokes better on Sunday than they did on Saturday. The team finished with a score of 354. Mari Pechacek played the best round Sunday, with a score of 86. McDonald also shot an 86, and finished in a tie for 23rd overall.

According to the 2014-15 UWRF golf season statistics, the women’s golf team placed 14th with a score of 752 at the Georgianni Memorial Invitational which was held Aug. 30- 31. They also placed second at the Augsburg Border Battle Triangular with a score of 356.

At last year’s 2013 WIAC championship, the women’s golf team had 1088 strokes and placed sixth overall. UW-Eau Claire won last year’s WIAC championship with a total of 999 strokes.

Not all UW System schools have a women’s golf team, there are only seven: UWRF, Steven’s Point, Stout, Eau Claire, UW-Whitewater, UW-Osh Kosh and UW-Platteville.

The women’s golf team will play in Nekoosa, Wisconsin, on Oct. 3-5 for the WIAC championship at Lake Arrowhead Golf Course. The Friday match is scheduled for noon while the Saturday and Sunday matches are scheduled at 10 a.m.