WILMINGTON, N.C. - Kent State turned in its best round of the 2010 NCAA Women's Golf Championship, as junior Martina Gavier (Cordoba, Argentina) and sophomore Mercedes Germino (Necochea, Argentina) fired even-par 72s to lead the Flashes to a third-round 297 (+9).
The steady effort on the par 72, 6,368-yard Dye Course at the Country Club of Landfall moved the Golden Flashes three spots up the leaderboard into a tie for 21st place with 13th-ranked Stanford at 909 (+45). Thursday's score was eight shots better than their rain-interrupted second round and 10 strokes lower than Tuesday's opening 18.
"When you look at what Martina and Mechy did and how Shamira brought it back after a little bit of a rough start, you can definitely see the improvement over the past two days," head coach Mike Morrow said. "Hopefully we can put four of our best scores of the year together in one round. We made up some ground on some pretty good teams today and we'll put the pedal to the metal and see what we can do tomorrow morning."
With the leaders currently out on the course, third-ranked USC continues to maintain a relatively slim advantage at seven-under par (as of 4 p.m. EDT). The Trojans are seven strokes clear of No. 6 Alabama and No. 7 Purdue, who are tied for second at even par.
Starting on the 10th hole, both Gavier and Germino posted a trio birdies and three bogeys on their scorecard to tie for Kent State's lowest score so far in the tournament - and matching the second-best individual score in the program's four NCAA appearances. With rounds of 76-73-72 (+5), Germino is the Flashes' low player and currently stands tied for 44th.
Sophomore Shamira Marshall (Macedonia, Ohio) recorded her second 75 (+3) of the championship thanks to a stretch in which she ripped off three birdies in four holes, while classmate Mandi Morrow (Kent, Ohio) notched a 78 (+6). Junior Sarah Bradley (Cambridge, New Zealand) rounded out the line-up with an 81 (+9).
Arizona State's Jennifer Johnson continues to maintain the individual lead at eight-under par, three shots ahead of Oklahoma State's Caroline Hedwall and USC's Jennifer Song.
The Golden Flashes will wrap up play Friday morning at 8 a.m.
Kent State Individual Scores (placement as of 4 p.m. EDT)
T44. Mercedes Germino 76-73-72=221
T94. Shamira Marshall 75-79-75=229
T105. Martina Gavier 80-79-72=229
T105. Sarah Bradley 76-74-81=231
123. Mandi Morrow 85-79-78=242