Sept. 25, 2012
VAIL, Colo. - Senior Demi Runas shot a tournament-record 5-under 67 on Tuesday, moving into a one-shot lead and bringing her UC Davis teammates within two shots of first place after two rounds of the Golfweek Conference Challenge at Red Sky Golf Club.
Runas had a bogey-free round that featured three birdies and her second eagle in as many days. Her second straight round below par left her at 6-under 138 and with a one-shot lead over Pepperdine's Grace Na, whose Waves team is 1-under 575 and in first place.
The Aggies' shot a tournament-best 3-under 285 in Tuesday's second round and are 1-over for the week. Freshman Andrea Wong had a spectacular 71 while sophomore Beverly Vatananugulkit shot a 73, putting the pair in a tie for 11th at 2-over 146.
"We really stuck to our plan and did what we needed to do to put ourselves in a great spot going into the final round," said Aggie coach Anna Temple.
Wednesday's final round is setting up as a two-team race for the title between Pepperdine and UC Davis. Oklahoma is in third, nine shots behind the Aggies, while Ole Miss is 19 shots back.
Runas, the reigning two-time Big West Player of the Year, had an impressive day by shooting 4-under 32 on the front nine of Red Sky's Fazio Course. She was 1 under after five holes before holing out from just over 100 yards on the par-4 sixth hole. It was her second eagle on the front nine in the tournament after picking one up on the eighth hole on Monday.
A birdie on No. 8 and one more on No. 13 combined with 10 pars to give her a 67, one shot off her Aggie career-best.
Wong had three bogeys but countered them and then some with four birdies to help her to a 71. She played the back nine a shot below par, finishing with a birdie-4 on the 18th. Vatananugulkit was 2 over after nine holes and three over after 11 but had a pair of birdies the remainder of her round to post a 73.
Four consecutive birdies to end her round - after she was at 6 over after 14 holes - helped Simanton finish with a flurry and bring her in with a 74. She had a half-dozen birdies on the day. Lewis posted a one-shot improvement over Monday and enjoyed five straight pars on her front nine to help highlight her Tuesday.
Pepperdine and UC Davis will play with Oklahoma during Wednesday's second round beginning at 7:45 a.m. (Pacific). The Aggies finished fourth at last year's tournament.
GOLFWEEK CONFERENCE CHALLENGE
Red Sky Golf Club (Fazio Course
) Par 72, 6,262 yards
36 of 54 holes
1. Pepperdine, 286-289-575
2. UC DAVIS, 292-285-577
3. Oklahoma, 286-300-586
4. OIe Miss, 300-296-596
5. Campbell, 298-303-601
6. Denver, 305-297-602
7. UTSA, 307-296-603
T8. East Tennessee State, 298-306-604
T8. UCLA, 310-294-604
10. San Diego State, 302305-607
11. Nebraska, 303-307-610
T12. Furman, 305-307-612
T12. South Florida, 305-307-612
14 Florida State, 304-311-615
15. San Jose State, 303-314-617
17. Tulsa, 311-307-618
17. Georgia State, 310-314-624
18. Missouri State, 318-315-633
1. Demi Runas, UC Davis, 71-67-138
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at East-West Match Play
UC Davis defeats Nebraska in thrilling showdown
Aggies head to Wisconsin for
East-West Match Play