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Women’s golf falters at Jackrabbit Invite

Maria Perakis and Coach Morell at the Rio Verde Invite, Photo Courtesy of Bradley Athletics.

Bradley women’s golf took 10th place last weekend in Vegas at the Jackrabbit Invite. The Braves shot +49 to finish ahead of three other teams, with their 301 in the second round proving to be their best.

Bradley started with a respectable 305 in the first round, led by graduate student Mara Flaherty, who scored a team-low 72. Her prior experience on this course may have aided in her performance. 

“I kind of knew what to expect going in, and I felt really good about my game. I utilized good short-game work and I knew where to miss out there,” Flaherty said. “I knew how to play the wind, which resulted in getting multiple birdies [and] strengthened my performance in the first round.” 

Sophomore Allison Pacocha and junior Maria Perakis shot 77s in the first round, while three Braves finished with 79s – freshman Brooke Deebs, senior Grace Aromando and freshman Jillian Cosler. 

Bradley improved their score by four in the second round, shooting 301, led by Pacocha’s 73. Deebs and Perakis hit for 75, with Aromando right behind them hitting 76. Flaherty shot a 79, with Cosler a few strokes behind her with an 82. 

Entering the third round, the Braves wanted to finish strong with their lowest score of the day. Unfortunately, this didn’t happen.

Bradley finished the meet shooting 307, with Perakis leading the way with a 73. No other Brave shot below 75, as Flaherty turned in her highest round with a 79.

“I was hitting a lot of really close shots and approach shots in the first round. Then, kind of as the day went on, I was missing a little bit more,” Flaherty said. “I wasn’t making as many puts and just fatigue caught up with me.” 

Pacocha shot a 76, Deebs scored a 78, Aromando matched Flaherty with a 79 and Cosler finished with an 82. 

“Rio Verde [Invite] was a little bit easier than the course out in Vegas and the competition was steeper,” head coach Halley Morell said. “There were three teams in the top 100 at this tournament in Vegas and we got to play with Grand Canyon the first day, who ended up winning the tournament. 

“We got to see some of the things that we need to work on this season to get to where they are. It was a really good learning experience to be able to play with them and see what we need to improve to be able to be in their shoes,” Morell added. 

The Braves hope to break into the top five on March 25-26 in Johns Creek, Georgia at the Georgia State Spring Invite.

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