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Women's golf gearing up for first-ever home event

Stones River Shootout features in-state foes Belmont and Austin Peay

April 5, 2010 · Athletic Communications
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - After spending countless hours over the past nine years practicing on local courses, the Middle Tennessee women's golf team will host their first ever event in Murfreesboro on Tuesday. The Stones River Shootout, a single-round event featuring Austin Peay and Belmont, will begin play at 1 p.m at Stones River Country Club.

"Hopefully this will just be a taste of what we will have in the future," said Coach Chris Adams. "It's nice to have some teams coming down to play us on one of our home courses. I'm hoping we can also get some people out here to watch us a little bit too."

The Blue Raiders will be capping off a particularly busy stretch as Tuesday's event will be their third in the past nine days. Middle Tennessee played at the UALR Women's Classic on Monday and Tuesday last week, finishing third but tying for the best three-round performance in school history. They followed it up by finishing seventh at the star-studded Rebel Intercollegiate this past weekend, which featured 16 teams ranked in the top 100 in the country.

Middle Tennessee has been led this season by junior Morgan Hale. The Tullahoma native and reigning Sun Belt Conference Golfer of the Month posted the third-best score in Blue Raider history last month at the Kiawah Island Women's Intercollegiate en route to a third place finish in the 169-player event. She also set a career-low round in the event, and has since tied it on two more occasions.

Ashley Haggard also boasts of a third place finish this season, taking home the honors in last week's 88-player UALR Women's Classic. The freshman from Savannah tied for the fourth-best round in school history with an opening round four-under 68 at the event.

Clara Leathers is having one of her best seasons this spring as well. After finishing in the top ten last week at the UALR Women's Classic, the senior strung together some of her best rounds in the past two years on the way to a career-best three round score of 219 to finish 11th at the 111-player Rebel Intercollegiate.

The Stones River Shootout will cap Middle Tennessee's regular season as the Blue Raiders will use it as a final tune-up before heading to the Sun Belt Conference Championships in Muscle Shoals, Ala., later this month.

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"We have a lot of confidence right now," said Adams. "We're playing well at the right time, especially with the conference championships coming up."

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