NEW ORLEANS, La. – With 18 holes remaining at the Allstate Sugar Bowl Intercollegiate Championship, Duke University junior Ana Belac holds a two stroke advantage, while the Blue Devils are only six strokes off the team lead at the 6,239-yard, par 72 English Turn Golf & Country Club in New Orleans, La.
With conditions turning drastically more difficult Monday with high winds in the opposite direction as Sunday along with rain and low temperatures, Belac was able to turn in an even-par, 72, and holds a four-under, 140, through 36 holes. She leads Florida’s Addison Baggarly and Southern California’s Amelia Garvey, who sit at two-under.
Belac played her first 26 holes at bogey free and held a two-under ledger through eight holes on Monday as she hit her 55-yard approach on No. 2 to within five feet and sank the birdie putt, while also turning in a birdie on the 476-yard, par five sixth as she hit her 50-yard approach to eight feet and rolled in the birdie.
A native of Portoroz, Slovenia, Belac had her first bogey of the tournament on No. 9 and added another bogey on No. 13, before chipping in from 25 feet on the 404-yard, par four 14th for birdie. She had trouble in the water hazard on No. 15 and suffered a bogey on her way to finishing with a 72. Belac hit 10 greens, 13 fairways and had 27 putts on the day.
If Belac can hold on for the win, she would notch her second collegiate victory and the first of the 2018-19 campaign.
As a team, Duke carded an eight-over, 296, after posting a 286 the day before. Its 36-hole total of 582 is six strokes behind Texas (576). Southern California (580), Duke (582), Florida (584) and South Carolina (588) round out the top five teams.
Sophomore Jaravee Boonchant turned in her second straight round of 72 and is tied for sixth with a 144. Boonchant, who is from Bangkok, Thailand, opened with a nine-foot birdie on No. 2, but then had a bogey on No.3, before chipping in for birdie on the 388-yard, par four fifth from eight yards. She made the turn at one-under, 35, but had back-to-back bogeys on No. 13 and No. 14. Boonchant sank a 27-foot birdie on No. 15 to return to even, which is where she finished. She collected eight total up-and-downs on the day, while hitting 12 fairways, seven greens and carding a tied for career-best 24 putts.
After totaling a 71 on day one, freshman Gina Kim signed for a 77 on Monday and is tied 24th with a 148. A product of Chapel Hill, N.C., Kim had a rough start on day two with bogeys on No. 1, No. 2 and No. 5. She went on to play the next six holes at one-under as she sank a birdie on the 491-yard, par five 11th. Kim closed with a three-over-par score during the final seven holes to finish with a 77. She hit eight fairways, nine greens and had 31 putts.
Sophomore Miranda Wang held a three-over ledger through 10 holes Monday, but totaled birdies on No. 11 and No. 17 to close the final eight holes with a one-over-par score. She finished with a three-over, 75, for the day and is tied for 52nd with a 154.
Over the first 36 holes, senior Virginia Elena Carta has been limited to just one birdie and in the second round carded a seven-over, 79, and is tied for 52nd overall. She hit 10 fairways, eight greens and had 35 putts Monday.
The final round will feature a shotgun start beginning at 9 a.m. (ET), as the Blue Devils will be on holes one, two and three along with Texas and Southern California.
Live scoring will be available via www.GolfStat.com. Follow the Blue Devils on Twitter (@DukeWOLF) and Instagram (@DukeWGOLF) for more information, photos, video and behind-the-scenes action.