FREMONT, Neb. – Blustery and rainy conditions failed to stop Concordia freshman Amy Ahlers from shooting an 80 to outperform all 54 individuals at Wednesday’s GPAC Qualifier No. 3. Ahlers, named the GPAC golfer of the week earlier on Wednesday, also tied for first at the second qualifier with an identical 80. Her 89-80-80–249 has her in fourth place on the overall leaderboard.
As a team, head coach Brett Muller’s Bulldogs tied for sixth on Wednesday with a 383. Through three qualifiers, Concordia’s total of 366-374-383–1,123 ranks fifth in the conference standings.
Ahlers, who hails from Albion, Neb., is the biggest reason why the Bulldogs have improved so drastically from their 11th-place conference finish from a year ago.
“I’m proud of Amy,” Muller said. “This is the third tournament she’s won already. That’s pretty impressive. I don’t think we’ve ever had someone win a GPAC qualifier on the women’s side.”
After shooting a 43 on her front nine, Ahlers came back in a big way. She parred on her 10th and 11th holes before a key birdie on 12 that set her up to out-pace the runner up by three strokes.
The rest of Concordia’s lineup fell in well behind Ahlers. The other four Bulldogs carded scores of 98 or higher: freshman Kayla Krueger (98 – 31st), juniors Allison Schieffer (101 – T36) and Melissa McIntosh (104 – T45) and sophomore Kristin Remm (106 – T49).
Krueger, a native of Alberdeen, S.D., is next in line after Ahlers among Bulldog leaders. Krueger has totaled 92-84-98–274 for a current 19th-place standing in the GPAC.
“Kayla was disappointed. She’s definitely a better player than what she showed today,” Muller said. “She had a couple bad breaks and she didn’t hit the drive as well as she normally does. That’s what hurt her.”
All in all, it’s been a major rebound season for a squad that finished at the bottom of the conference in 2012-13.
“It’s a pretty tight conference,” Muller said. “Five through 10 are within 15 shots of each other. Teams are jockeying for position as we come down to GPAC No. 4. I don’t know if we can catch Mount Marty (fourth place) but we’re trying to hold onto No. 5, which is a vast improvement from last year.”
The Bulldogs are back in action Thursday, May 1 for the Mount Marty Invite at Fox Run Golf Course in Yankton, S.D. Concordia will return to the same course on Monday, May 5 for GPAC Qualifier No. 4 – the final meet of the 2013-14 season.