Wigger Opens NCAA Play with 76
May 23, 2006
Columbus, OH – Virginia junior golfer Leah Wigger posted a 4-over 76 during the first round of play at the NCAA Championships being contested at Ohio State. The 72-hole event runs through Friday.
Wigger qualified for the NCAAs after placing sixth at the NCAA East Regional. Last year she was the runner up at the event.
“Today was a little bit of a struggle, particularly off the tee.” Wigger said after her morning round. “It is a course, that if you don’t hit the fairway, you are penalized. The rough is pretty thick. It is a challenge. You basically have to hit a bunker shot out of the rough.”
Starting on the No. 10 tee and playing in the first group of the day, Wigger got off to a slow start with two bogies over her first four holes. She managed one birdie before posting another bogie to turn at 3-over.
Wigger birdied the No. 1 hole to get back to 2-over, but then had bogies on No. 3 and 8 to finish at 76.
“She struggled a little bit with ball striking but still kept it together,” said Virginia coach Jan Mann. “There are a lot of days of golf left and she’ll get back into it.”
Wigger’s 76 has her tied for 46th overall in the 126-player field. Pepperdine’s Eileen Vargas grabbed the opening round lead with a 4-under 68. Only six players in the field managed to shoot below par on Ohio State’s Scarlet Course.
“I had some par chances and just missed a few putts,” Wigger said. “All of my problems are easy fixes. I think I will be better if I can hit a few more fairways. I just need to stay relaxed on the course and not worry about the score. I just need to focus on the target and have fun.”
Wigger will start her second round at 2:10 p.m. Wednesday.
Southern California took the early lead by posting a 3-over 291, one shot better than Pac-10 rival Arizona State. Wake Forest and Duke, tied for fifth at 9-over 297, were the top finishers among ACC schools.
Live scoring of the tournament is on the Internet at www.golfstat.com.