Durham, Blue Raiders continue record-setting run

Middle Tennessee captures Belmont Invitational

March 9, 2007 · MT Media Relations

HERMITAGE, Tenn. - Just when you thought Taryn Durham had done about all that could be expected of a college golfer in a week's time, the Middle Tennessee junior outdid herself once again in winning the Belmont Invitational at Old Hickory Country Club Friday.

Durham won her second event in three days after capturing the USA Lady Jaguar Invitational in record fashion Tuesday. Her fifth career title was also a record-setting presentation as she set Blue Raider records for best round, best second-round total and best two-round tournament total.

Durham's 67 bested the 68 she shot Tuesday as the top round in school history, and the 139 is the best two-round tournament total ever at Middle Tennessee.

Durham's play helped pace the Blue Raiders to the team championship with the third best two-round total in program history - a 25-over 593 on the par-71 course. Middle Tennessee's second-round 2-over-par 286 was the best round in school history and also goes down as the best second-round showing ever - besting the mark of 288 the team set earlier in the week.

By improving by 21 strokes from the first round Middle Tennessee was able to turn a seven-shot deficit into a six-stroke championship, its second of the week and fifth under head coach Rachael Short.

"I was very proud of the girls and how they came out and attacked the course today," Short said. "We did not play well at all in the first round Thursday, but everyone played with a different mindset today and the results were there."

Durham was in a zone from the outset as she tamed the course to the tune of a 4-under 67 to rally with a 3-under 139 to win the tournament by five shots over Vanderbilt's Amber Lundskog, who was playing as an individual. Blue Raider sophomore Leigh Wilkins, playing as an individual, finished third with a career-best two-round total of 145. The 69 she shot in the opening round is tied for third best in school history. The only other player to shoot in the 60s during the two-day event was Durham.

Senior Maggie McGill also continued her solid play of late with another top 10 finish. McGill's 148 tied for the sixth-best two-round total in school history and landed her a solid seventh-place overall finish.

Mallory Bishop and newcomer Clara Leathers tied for 11th with a 153. Leathers established a personal best with a 71 in Friday's second round. Tasha Gough rounded out the lineup for Middle Tennessee with a 162, finishing 22nd overall. Jamey Dillard played as an individual and finished tied for 13th with a 156.

Belmont Invitational
Old Hickory Country Club
Round 1 Team Scores
1 Middle Tennessee 307-286 = 593
2 Belmont 300-299 = 599
3 Tennessee Tech 307-309 = 616
4 Austin Peay 322-312 = 634
5 Lipscomb 331-316 = 647

MT Team Scores
1 Taryn Durham 72-67 = 139
7 Maggie McGill 73-75 = 148
T11 Mallory Bishop 80-73 = 153
T11 Clara Leathers 82-71 = 153
22 Tasha Gough 82-80 = 162

* 3 Leigh Wilkins 69-76 = 145
* T13 Jamey Dillard 78-78 = 156
* - playing as individual

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