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Lady Raider Golf Ready for Season to Open

September 5, 2002 · MT Media Relations
By Chris Felker

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Second-year Middle Tennessee head coach Rachael Moore and her Lady Raider golf team are ready to come out swinging in the 2002 fall season. With the first tournament, the Unlimited Potential/Bay Tree Invitational in Myrtle Beach, S.C., this weekend, the young coach is anxious to see what her team can do in only their second year of competition.

The Unlimited Potential/Bay Tree boasts the largest field in the country with 36 teams during the three-day, 54-hole tourney.

"That event is going to be huge. We hope we can go out there and play strong in this first tournament," Moore said.

Moore is confident the team will experience more success this year than last because everyone returns after a strong showing at last year's Sun Belt Championships. Moore also believes her team will bring home a first place finish this year.

"I have high expectations for this season. Like last year, I want the girls to finish in the top five of each tournament," Moore said. "We need to get the team tight and finish first in one of these events to build confidence. That would help us out tremendously. I believe they can do that. They just have to put each round of a tournament together and stay focused."

Moore has been hot on the recruiting trail over the summer months and she is reaping the benefits, lining up several top recruits for visits in the coming months.

"We are bringing most of the recruits in this fall. I have three girls that I am bringing in sometime between now and November," Moore said. "I have had a couple come in on unofficial visits this summer. I think this is a big year for me to bring in some great players."

Moore has added one freshman, Grace Holmes, to her squad. The combination of a year's experience for everyone on the squad as well as the addition of Holmes should make practice more competitive.

"It is going to be more competitive before we even go to the tournaments. That is going to help us and make everybody work very hard. I think that will pay off when we play in those tournaments."

Once again, Moore will turn to junior Tamara Munsch to lead the squad. Munsch paced the squad in all 11 tournaments last season, including a first place finish in the Chris Banister Classic with a two-day score of 154.

"Tamara came off a really good summer," Moore said. "She finished second in the Kansas Amateur Tournament, which is a great tournament and a good finish for her. She has come in ready to get things going. She is going to be my leader again. We are looking forward to see how things go for her in the upcoming year."

Senior Kandace Burnett will provide the team with senior leadership, an intangible that is essential to being a successful squad. Burnett finished second on the team in seven of 11 tournaments a year ago.

"Kandace had a great summer. She has been a solid player and playing really well. I am looking forward to seeing some great things from her this season."

Sophomore Kristin Lynch should be a more consistent player and valuable contributor this year after having an excellent freshman campaign. Lynch shot a season-best round of 75 on the final day of the conference championships in Niceville, Fla.

"Kristin Lynch has been playing great this summer. She is going to be a key player this year. She struggled some last year, but I think getting one year under her belt is going to help out."

Moore is also expecting big things from the sophomore duo of Amanda Harter and Kemmerlee Pennington in their second year of competition.

"Amanda and Kemmerlee both worked hard this summer. We will see how much of that pays off this spring with the competition between Grace Holmes and those two. We will see how that plays out."

Moore knows her squad will only get better with experience and better competition, something every player will get this weekend in Myrtle Beach. With only two upperclassmen on the roster, the future looks bright for Lady Raider golf.

"We gained a lot of valuable experience last year, both as individuals and as a team," Moore concluded. "And we're still a young team, with four sophomores and one freshman. We have to continue to improve day-to-day and tournament-to-tournament, putting all phases of the game together. When we can get three or four girls to do that consistently, this team will take off, and I believe that will be very soon."

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