Ahlers climbs to second place after 36 holes of GPAC golf

By Jacob Knabel on May. 1, 2017 in Women's Golf

COLUMBUS, Neb. – With round two of the GPAC women’s golf championships in the books, senior Amy Ahlers has climbed from sixth to second on the conference leaderboard. Already a three-time top five GPAC finisher, Ahlers is making a run at her first career conference title. As a team, the Bulldogs moved past Doane and are tied for eighth following Monday’s action at Quail Run Golf Course in Columbus, Neb.

Head coach Brett Muller’s squad now has a two-round GPAC score of 386-378–764. The GPAC championships will wrap up with the final two rounds set to be played on Tuesday.

Ahlers is attempting to track down Mount Marty’s Logan Wagner (77-77–154) for the title. On Monday, Ahlers shaved seven strokes off her score from the GPAC championship round played back in the fall. Her latest efforts resulted in a four-over-par 76 for the lowest score in the field. Ahlers was particularly good on the front nine, turning in an even par 36. She birdied on 2 and 7.

“Amy’s in a much different mindset than she has been in the past going into the conference tournament,” Muller said. “She knows this is her last chance to win a conference and hopefully move onto nationals. She definitely has more of an attack mindset. She’s going to continue to execute that plan tomorrow.”

Ahlers’ previous conference finishes were fourth as a freshman, second as a sophomore and third as a junior. The native of Albion, Neb., has won 10 events in a career that has stood out as the best in program history. Her season 18-hole average now stands at 80.31, a figure that would break her own single-season record.

Freshman Murphy Sears has put herself in the running for a top-10 conference finish with her two-round score of 85-90–175, which places her in a tie for 11th. Other Bulldogs who qualify for the overall leaderboard are Payton DeMers-Sahling (112-101–213; 43rd) and Madison Pitsch (106-118–224; 44th). Lauren Sperry served the role of the team’s No. 4 golfer on Monday by carding a 111.

“On the team side, we need more consistency at three, four and five,” Muller said. “We need more scores in the 90s tomorrow. Murphy definitely has room to improve as well. I look for us to improve score. I don’t think it’s unrealistic for us to break 360 tomorrow.”

The GPAC championships will pick back up at 9 a.m. CT on Tuesday in what will be the final day of the event. Thirty-six holes will be played with Quail Run again serving as the venue. Team and individual champions receive automatic berths to the national championships.