Stephanie Kim leads Jacks at Oregon State Invitational
By Tyler Childers
The first tournament of the season is in the books for the Northern Arizona University (NAU) golf team. Following two days of play, the Jacks finished eighth with senior Stephanie Kim’s eighth place finish.
The Oregon State Invitational was held at Trysting Tree Golf Club in Corvallis, Ore., and featured a 16-team field.
“She [Kim] played great.” Bedortha said via NAU athletics. “I had a sense when she came back to school and she was playing well. She played consistent throughout the whole tournament. She did a great job. It is fun watching her play like that. It was really nice to see for sure.”
Kim shot 73–71–73 (217 overall) to finish one over-par, a play tied with Washington’s Cyd Okino for eighth in the individual scores. The finish was one stroke above her career best in a three-round tournament and only six strokes off from the tournament’s winner, the University of Washington’s Charlotte Thomas.
Thomas finished with the low score of the tournament, shooting 70–72–69 (211 overall) and ending at five under par.
Kim recorded eight birdies in her three rounds. Six of the seven golfers who finished better than Kim were athletes from PAC-12 schools, and all seven attend school in the greater Northwest, where the tournament was held. This could have created a “home-field advantage” for the Northwest schools as the Jacks had not seen this course until the tournament.
“I think we did pretty well,” Kim said via NAU athletics. “For the first tournament, I think it was a good experience. It was the first time playing the course so I think it was good.”
True freshman Savana Bezdicek finished tied for 32nd in her first collegiate debut. Bezdicek shot 76–76–77 (229 overall), finishing at 13 over-par and second on the Lumberjacks team scorecard.
Bezdicek’s coach and teammates were impressed with how her NAU debut went and expect her to improve with time.
“Savana did great,” Kim said via NAU Athletics. “She played well in the qualifying and her game looked pretty solid coming in. It was a good start for her and her college career.”
Junior Kaitlen Parsons finished tied for 41st with scores of 75–76–80 (231 overall), sophomore Laura Jabczenski finished tied for 70th with scores of 84–76–79 (239 overall), and sophomore Darian Spivey shot 81–85–80 (246 overall) to finish in a tie for 80th.
The Lumberjacks finished ahead of all Big Sky Conference (BSC) teams present this week, which is a good sign early in the season. NAU will host the BSC in April, but have improvements to make before then.
“Everybody has their stuff that they want to work on,” Bezdicek said via NAU athletics. “We have some goals going into the next tournament. We want to play solid and consistent.”
The Jacks golf team will be back in Oregon for the Rose City Collegiate tournament Oct. 1 and 2.