Three Rebels in Top 25 Entering Final Round in Athens
April 13, 2018
ATHENS, Ga. – It was a tough first round on Friday for the Ole Miss women’s golf team at the prestigious Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic, but three Rebels battled their way back into the top 25 with 18 holes to play at the University of Georgia Golf Course.
Pi-Lillebi Hermansson and Kie Purdom led the way for the Rebels in a tie for 17th, each shooting 2-over through the first 36 holes at The Liz. Julia Johnson was just behind at 4-over for the day and in a tie for 24th. Collectively, Ole Miss stands in ninth place at 305-292--597 (+21).
“UGA is a tough course, but if you hit the ball on the correct part of the green, you can make some birdies out here,” said head coach Kory Henkes. “I was really proud of Pi, Kie and Julia because they didn’t start their second round off great but fought really hard to post some great scores. They didn’t let a little bit of adversity get them down; instead, they chose to keep a level head and play like they are capable.”
Ole Miss had an uncharacteristic opening round, shooting 12 strokes over its season average, and it looked like that performance would carry through into Round 2. Hermansson picked up two bogeys in her first five holes, Johnson had three and Purdom found herself 4-over through three in Round 2—but the trio settled in.
Purdom came through with the best turnaround of the bunch, going 4-under and bogey-free over her next 15 holes for an even-par 72. It was the first round at par or under of the spring season for the junior out of Lexington, Kentucky.
“It was so nice to play like Kie again,” Purdom said. “I’ve been stuck in a bit of a mental rut recently. It’s hard to play good golf when you’re fighting against yourself. So I’ve been working really hard with our
Hermansson played her final 13 holes at 3-under with just one bogey. After walking the course with assistant coach Drew Belt, she finished Round 2 at 2-under for her first under-par round of the spring.
“The first round was a grind because of my poor tee shots. However, my irons and putting were good, so going into the second round, I knew I had the potential to score low as long as I kept the ball in play,” Hermansson said. “Coach Drew and I worked together well. We made good decisions on every shot and played the course as
Johnson started her second round with a birdie before three straight bogeys knocked her to 2-over for the round. However, like her teammates, she recovered, carding just one bogey the rest of the way to go along with four birdies, including back-to-back birdies coming into the clubhouse.
After an up-and-down first day, the Rebels will close The Liz with 18 more holes on Saturday. Ole Miss is in position to move up on the leaderboard in Athens, sandwiched between a couple of familiar foes, four strokes behind No. 45 Kennesaw State and nine strokes ahead of No. 13 Florida.
The Rebels are paired with Kennesaw State and Louisville for Round 3. They’ll tee off starting at 7:35 a.m. CT from the 10th hole.
For all Ole Miss women’s golf news and information, go to OleMissSports.com, and follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissWGolf and Facebook at Ole Miss Women’s Golf.
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