The Briar Cliff women’s golf team put together a furious rally on the final day of this year’s GPAC Women’s Golf Championship in Columbus, Nebraska to storm back and win the GPAC Championship. The title marks not only the first championship for the Chargers in women’s golf, it is also the first GPAC title for any women’s team in Briar Cliff history. Briar Cliff earns an automatic birth to the NAIA Women’s Golf National Championship in Palm Beach, Florida at PGA National-Fazio Course May 23-26 after winning the conference championship.
The Cliff entered the final 36 holes of the tournament with an 11-stroke deficit to Morningside but that isn’t where the rally began. The Chargers began their epic comeback in round two after the Mustangs held a 30-stroke lead going into the second round after Morningside shot a 320 at Willow Run Golf Course in Sioux Falls, South Dakota last fall in the opening round of the conference championship, compared to Briar Cliff shooting a 350.
Round two was played yesterday at Quail Run Golf Course in Columbus, Nebraska with the Chargers making up 19 strokes on the day with a 332, while the Mustangs fired a 351. Heading into rounds three and four of the championship today back at Quail Run, the Cliff was 11 strokes back when it began to make its climb to the league title. BC shot a 334 in round three and Morningside carded a 345 as the teams headed to round four tied at 1,016 strokes apiece. The Chargers saved their best performance of the championship for the final round, turning in a team score of 322 in round four and the Mustangs shot a 338 for BC to notch the monumental comeback with a 16-stroke victory.
Briar Cliff was led at the championship by Taylor Minger with an overall score of 332 (87-82-81-82) to finish tied for fourth out of 69 golfers. Nicole Hemelberg, Abby Brinkman and Arianna Presilla all shot 80 in the fourth and final round to help BC net the conference title. Hemelberg finished seventh with an overall score of 336 (90-82-84-80) and Brinkman carded a 337 (87-85-85-80) through the four rounds. Presilla rounded out the scored for the Cliff with a 341 (88-87-86-80) to place ninth at the championship. Amy Ahlers of Concordia was the top golfer at the championship with a score of 319 (83-76-77-83)