Sac State women’s golf places first in Matador Invitational

Giuliana Grana

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The Sacramento State women’s golf team had a great start to the second half of their season as they finished in first place at the Matador Golf Invitational with freshman Astha Madan crowned as the tournament champion.

Madan who was first overall out of 48 golfers, carded rounds of 76-73-75-224 to take home the top honor. Fellow freshman Katie Dunaway also recorded a top 10 finish for the Hornets with a score of 76-76-80-232 to place her ninth on the leaderboard.

The team as a whole competed against seven other universities and shot a combined total of 304-305-320-929 in the three-round two-day competition in Simi Valley, California to claim Sac State women’s golf first win since Oct. 31, 2013 at the Rainbow Wahine Invitational in Oahu, Hawaii.

Coach David Sutherland was proud of the women this past tournament and how they played. “It was a great start for the gals, starting with a win,” Sutherland said.

The University of Santa Clara finished five strokes off of the Hornets total with a combined total of 308-306-320-934.

Madan shot the lowest final round (75) on Tuesday. The freshman had three golfers tie for second place as they finished three strokes behind her with a total of 227.

“To be honest I was not sure if I had even won yet, because I was still waiting on the other golfers to finish,” Madan said.

Despite her uncertainty, the freshman made a name for herself and was able to take the first place medal home.

This is her second tournament of the 2014-15 season. Last year, Madan was unavailable until the Rainbow Wahine Invitational on Oct. 24-26. due to competing for her native country of India in the Asian games.

Madan said she was excited going into this tournament, because it was only her second tournament with Sac State. She was also excited to be traveling down south with her teammates.

Junior Rockelle Sande finished in 13th place with an overall score of 76-78-81-235. Sophomore Chloe Bartek was Sac State’s final top 20 finisher as she recorded rounds of 76-78-84-238.

No. 1 player Sagee Palavivatana was the lone Hornet to finish at the bottom of the leaderboard. The senior carded rounds of 85-83-84-252.

Disappointed in her performance and unable to attain her goals for the tournament Palavivatana hopes to bring lower scores in their next tournament.

“Honestly I was not happy with my performance. I was disappointed that I was not able to shoot lower scores and commit to my shot better,” Palavivatana said.

She keeps her head high though as they prepare for their next tournament. She is beginning to set her goals and focus her mentality on what is at hand now.

Although, she was not happy with her own performance in southern California she was proud of her teammates and it showed that they were a solid team.

“I feel confident going into the next tournament and going into conference that we can take the conference title this year,” Palavivatana said.

The women’s next tournament will be a three-day event starting on Feb. 28 in Sedona, Arizona at the Red Rocks Invitational.

This article was updated on Feb. 16 to include the interviews of Astha Madan, Sagee Palavivatana, and coach David Sutherland.