WCU Women’s Golf Finishes Second at 2nd Annual Buccaneer Classic
Freshman Brie Mapanao paced the Catamount scoring five that included three inside the individual Top 10 with a career-best runner-up finish on Tuesday as Western Carolina came home in second place as a team at the 2nd Annual Buccaneer Classic at the par-72, 6,185-yard Crowfield Golf Club.
Behind Mapanao who shot 5-over par 221 for the tournament, fifth-year senior Madison Isaacson rallied seven spots to finish in a two-way tie for fifth with senior Victoria Ladd placing seventh to headline WCU’s scorers in the individual Top 10. Isaacson finished five strokes off the leader with Ladd one stroke in arrears of Isaacson.
Trailing by six strokes entering the final round, WCU managed to cut into the deficit at times throughout Tuesday afternoon but ultimately finished behind host Charleston Southern by the same margin at the conclusion of 54 holes. The Bucs finished with a score of 895, six ahead of WCU at 901. Illinois State was nine strokes back in third at 910 with UNC Asheville (943) and Gardner-Webb (953) rounding out the top five teams.
Tuesday’s runner-up finish for the Catamounts marked the first time they hadn’t hoisted championship hardware in four tournaments this fall. WCU closed the fall portion of its schedule with a mark of 30-1 in terms of teams it had beaten to start the 2022-23 season.
Mapano jumped to the top of the individual leaderboard on Tuesday after opening her round with a pair of birdies through her first 10 holes to sit at 2-under par with eight to play. The Quakers Hill, New South Wales, Australia, product stumbled with a double-bogey and consecutive bogeys between the 12th and 14th holes to be relegated to 2-over for the day. However, Mapanao recovered to birdie the par-3 16th for the first time in the tournament and closed with a trio of pars to shoot 1-over 73.
Isaacson matched her best round of the tournament with a 2-over par 74 on Tuesday, countering five bogeys with three birdies, while Ladd finished the event with an 80 for a three-round 226 in seventh place. Rounding out WCU’s scorers were sophomore Elizabeth Lohbauer in a three-way tie for 12th with a tournament score of 232 and redshirt sophomore Kayleigh Baker tied with three others for 16th with a final score of 234. Both Lohbauer and Baker carded six birdies apiece over the 54-hole event.
Playing unattached as an individual, sophomore Kaitlyn Wingnean advanced four spots in the final round, finishing tied for 16th at 234. The Canadian-born striker posted a pair of birdies in the third round.
After arguably the best fall season in program history that included four podium finishes with three team championships, Western Carolina turns its attention to the spring portion of its schedule. The Catamounts will return to the South Carolina Lowcountry for its first two tournaments in February, defending its title in the Oyster Shuck Match Play on Feb. 13-14 at the Charleston Municipal Golf Course before getting a rematch with Charleston Southern as the Bucs host the Rivertowne Invitational in Mt. Pleasant Feb. 26-28.
The five-event spring semester culminates with the 2023 SoCon Women’s Golf Championship in mid-April.
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2 – Western Carolina – 300 – 292 – 309 = 901 (+37)
2 – Brie Mapanao – 74-74-73 = 221 (+5)
T5 – Madison Isaacson – 77-74-74 = 225 (+9)
7 – Victoria Ladd – 73-73-80 = 226 (+10)
T12 – Elizabeth Lohbauer – 76-74-82 = 232 (+16)
T16 – Kayleigh Baker – 78-71-85 = 234 (+18)
T16 – Kaitlyn Wingnean (ind.) – 77-78-79 = 234 (+18)