Jacksonville, Fla. - Senior Kim Mitchell fired a final round score of 1-over par, 73, to lead Western Carolina women's golf at the UNF Collegiate which concluded Tuesday at the par-72, 6,002-yard Jacksonville Golf and Country Club. For a second-consecutive round, WCU posted a team score of 312, finishing tied with fellow Southern Conference member, Samford, for 13th in the final team standings.
Opening on the par-4 ninth, Mitchell was 3-over par through her first three holes. The Woodbridge, Va., native rallied, though, with three birdies on her next four holes, moving to even-par through seven played. Bogies on the par-5 first and par-4 second left her at 2-over for the final round before charting a fourth birdie on her next to last hole to shoot 1-over, 73. Mitchell finished with a two-day total of 225 (72-80-73).
Juniors Ashley Thompson (42nd-t) and Bethany Galloway (46th-t) finished a stroke apart in the final standings on Tuesday. Thompson had six bogies, a birdies and 11 pars to shoot 5-over, 77, to finish at 231 (76-78-77) while Galloway carded four bogies and 14 pars to shoot her second-straight round of 4-over par, 76, and finish the tournament at 232 (80-76-76). Thompson tied her third-best, 54-hole career score.
Mitchell finished with a team-high nine birdies while Thompson -- who was inserted into WCU's scoring five when senior Mariah Hopkins withdrew due to illness -- paced the squad with 34 pars.
Entering the final round tied with No. 25 Texas, 36th-ranked Houston was 10-strokes better than the Longhorns on Tuesday, cruising to the team championship with a final round score of 288 for a three-round tally of 878. Texas was the runner-up at 888 with Campbell and College of Charleston finishing tied for third, even at 900. SoCon-member, Chattanooga, rallied one spot in the final standings to come home fifth with a two-day total of 904.
Houston's Megan Thothong and Emily Gilbreth shared the individual medalist honors, both posting two-day scores of 1-over par, 217. Thothong moved four spots to the top of the leader board while Gilbreth advanced seven positions on the final day of competition to match her teammate. Mary Dawson of North Florida and Sophia Schubert of Texas finished tied for third overall, just a stroke off the pace.
Western Carolina returns to action March 27-29 at the Panther Intercollegiate, hosted by Georgia State at the Eagle's Landing Country Club in Stockbridge, Ga. The Catamounts finished third at the tournament a season ago with Mitchell showing the way in third place.