Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla., May 14, 2014 – Led by freshman Samantha Han and senior Andrea Hibbert's seven-over 79, the No. 1-ranked Washington University in St. Louis women's golf team moved into fourth place with a team score of 318 (+30) on the second day of the 2014 NCAA Division III Championship Wednesday at the Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla.
No. 9 Rhodes College maintained its lead in the team standings with a two-day total of 634 (311-323), while No. 3 University of Texas-Tyler is five shots back with a 639 (327-312). No. 6-ranked and defending national champion University of Mary-Hardin Baylor is third at 641 (325-316), while Washington U. (328-318, 646) and No. 7 Ithaca College (326-324, 650) round out the top-five in the 21-team field.
"We settled in after the first few holes yesterday and continued that today as the girls felt more comfortable," said sixth-year head coach Sean Curtis. "They still feel that they can play better, and pushing to get to the point they want to get to. We are pleased where we are at the halfway point."
Han and Hibbert led a group of four golfers that shot 80 or lower on day two for Washington U. Han fired a one-over 37 on the back nine, with birdies on No. 13 and No. 18 to highlight the second-lowest round of her career. Hibbert used a stretch of three birdies in a span of four holes to shoot 38 on the back and 41 on the front. She had a team-high four birdies on the day.
"We have been looking forward to the national championship all year, and I think there were some expectations and nerves on the first day. We played more relaxed today, and got off to a great start," said Hibbert. "I was really striking my irons well today, and that gave me a chance to get some birdies."
Sophomore Connie Zhou remains in the hunt for an individual title with a two-day total of 158 (78-80). Zhou is six shots behind overall leader Doyle' O'Brien of the University of St. Thomas. O'Brien is +8 through 27 holes, and will finish round two Thursday.
Washington U. continues play Thursday with 18 holes beginning with a shotgun start at 12 p.m. (ET). The Bears are paired up with Ithaca and No. 4 Williams for the final two rounds.
Bear Notebook: The 318 is tied for the second lowest round in school history at the national championship … Zhou has fired an 80 or lower in five-straight rounds in the NCAA Championship.