Orlando, Fla. - Senior Kim Mitchell turned in a solid second round on Monday to lead Western Carolina at the UCF Challenge, which is being held at the par-72, 6,349-yard Eagle Creek Golf Club. Mitchell countered four bogies with a birdie and 13 pars to shoot 3-over, 75, for a two-day tally of 154, tied for 51st overall. The Catamounts (621) remain in 17th place collectively, following up Sunday's 319 with a team score of 302 on Monday.
Paired with golfers from Mississippi State and Daytona State, WCU's scoring five will begin Tuesday's final round with a shotgun start between holes No. 15 and 17.
Mitchell had two bogies among her first nine holes on the back nine Monday, making the turn at 2-over par. Back-to-back bogies on the par-4 second and third left her at 4-over for the round with six holes to play. The Woodbridge, Va., native finished strong with five pars and a birdie for a 1-under score over her last six holes to shoot 3-over, 75. A day earlier, Mitchell was plus-3 over the same span.
True freshman Natalia Villavicencio was among the big movers on the second day, advancing 14 positions after carding a career-low round of 1-over par, 73 -- a nine stroke improvement. She moved into a tie for 64th with a two-round score of 155. Villavicencio played the back nine at 1-over after a bogey on the opening par-4 10th, followed by eight-consecutive pars. A product of Santiago, Chile, Villavicencio came to the clubhouse after countering a pair of bogies with two birdies, shooting even on the front nine after shooting 7-over on the same layout the day before.
Senior Mariah Hopkins slipped three spots into a tie for 68th overall, a stroke back at 156. Hopkins was even par through the back nine, countering a pair of bogies with two birdies. She finished her round with five pars and four bogies on the front nine. Freshman Maddi Caldwell is also among the tie for 68th individually after matching her opening round 6-over par, 78, on Monday. She, too, played the back nine even.
Rounding out WCU's scoring five is junior Bethany Galloway who is in a tie for 93rd overall with a two-day total of 165. Galloway charted a pair of birdies on Monday, but had seven holes of bogey-or-worse.
Tied for third after the opening round, No. 25 Missouri (584) jumped two spots to grab the tournament team lead through 36 holes. The Tigers lead second-place, Tulane (587), by three strokes after the Green Wave surged four positions in the standings. No. 15 Iowa State (588) remained third, a stroke behind Tulane, with first-round leader, No. 42 Houston (590), slipping three spots into fourth and Kentucky (595) rounding out the top five teams.
Missouri's Michelle Butler and East Carolina's Frida Gustafsson Spang are tied atop the individual leader board after 36 holes with matching scores of 3-under par, 141. It is the second-straight day that Butler has shared the tournament's top-spot while Gustafsson Spang advanced seven spots in the standings with a second-round 4-under par, 68, on Monday.
The final round of WCU's spring-opening event is scheduled for Tuesday morning with a shotgun start beginning at 8:45 am. Live scoring of the event is available online through GolfStatResults.com.