The No. 6 USC women’s golf team looks to bounce back and finish the fall season strong this week at the Turtle Bay Collegiate Invitational in Kahuku, Hawaii.
The first day of the tournament finished with the Women of Troy in fourth place at six-over, 12 strokes behind UC Davis. Junior Lizette Salas and freshman Cyna Rodriguez led the team with a one-under 71 to tie for fifth place. Senior Stefanie Endstrasser, tied for 27th, fired a two-over 74. Senior Caroline Kim finished one stroke back of Endstrasser at three-over 75, leaving her tied for 40th, while sophomore Inah Park finished tied for 79th after her eight-over 80.
Traveling to Hawaii this week along with Kim, Park and Rodriguez is senior All-American Belen Mozo. The trio of Kim, Park and Rodriguez is competing for roster spots for the spring season. Mozo, who withdrew from the Fall Preview with a shoulder injury, is traveling with the team to play as an individual.
After winning the first tournament of its season, the team has slipped in each succeeding tournament, finishing sixth and 16th in its previous two tournaments. The 16th place finish was the Women of Troy’s worst since the 2005 NCAA Championship, when they finished 11th and broke a streak of 32 straight top-10 finishes.
This week, behind returning All-Americans Salas and Endstrasser, the team looks to restart that streak. Salas has played twice this season, finishing 25th and 12th while missing one tournament to attend a wedding. Endstrasser made her season debut last weekend at the University of North Carolina Women’s Fall Preview, where she struggled and finished 79th.
The team will again miss sophomore All-American Jennifer Song, who is just returning from South Korea after competing in the Hana Bank-KOLON Championship, an LPGA tournament. Song, the individual winner of both collegiate tournaments she has played this season, finished tied for 65th.
The tournament wraps up on Wednesday.