Freshman leads NAU golf to top-ten finish

 
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BY TYLER CHILDERS —

The Northern Arizona University (NAU) golf team hosted the Red Rocks Invitational March 2 and 3 at the Oak Creek Country Club in Sedona and finished seventh in the 21-team field, led by freshman Savana Bezdicek. Bezdicek shot two rounds of 75 (150) to finish tied for sixth individually, only four shots off the individual winner, junior Clarissa Gluce from California State University-Northridge.

“(Bezdicek’s) very good,” said head coach Brad Bedortha. “She’s just going to continue to grow and improve as a player. It’s exciting to know she’s only a freshman.”

Junior Kaitlen Parsons also had a good weekend to help the Lumberjacks finish in the top third of the field. Parsons shot rounds of 76 and 75 to finish tied for 12th, one shot behind Bezdicek, despite playing through an injury.

“I actually had gotten really sunburned on my hands where it turned into third degree burns and blistered over,” Parsons said. “So, I’ve been having my hands wrapped and haven’t been able to hold a club for a while.”

Parsons suffered the severe sunburn during the Ocotillo Tournament in Chandler that the Lumberjacks hosted February 11-13.

Both Parsons and Bezdicek credit their scores to keeping good attitudes this weekend.

“A good mental attitude plays in a lot,” Bezdicek said. “It’s the difference between playing good and playing even better. If you get too down on yourself it can frustrate you so much that everything goes downhill from there. That’s probably one of the most important parts of the golf game.”

Bedortha is also a believer of attitudes influencing scores.

“Trying to get them in the right mindset and stay positive and focus on what they need to do to stay successful is huge,” Bedortha said. “I would say it’s a very big part of the game.”

Despite the good individual performances, Bedortha was still a little frustrated after the tournament. Sophomores Melissa Olson and Darian Spivey both shot rounds of 81 and 83 (164) to finish 14 strokes behind teammate Bezdicek

“We have been able to get three good scores most of the rounds,” Bedortha said. “We’re having to count too high of scores for our fifth score, so we need to figure out how to solidify our lineup with a fourth and fifth player that’s going to step up and be a little more consistent for us. We ended up seventh, but only three shots out of fourth place.”

The NAU golf team will compete next at the Rio Verde Invitational in Rio Verde, Ariz. from March 8–10.

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