University of Missouri sophomore golfer Jess Yuen (Bolingbrook, Ill.) fired an even-par 72 Friday in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Women’s Golf National Championship, held at Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla. Yuen, who qualified for the championship individually as part of Head Coach Stephanie Priesmeyer’s squad, stands tied for 11th overall in the 132-competitor field after day one.
Yuen was near the top of the leaderboard all day, thanks to a one-under par 35 on the front nine. Her outward nine included a birdie on the par-four fourth hole, thanks to a lengthy par putt of over 30 feet. After bogies on 10 and 11 knocked her out of red numbers, Yuen righted the ship and strung together six-consecutive pars through 17, and closed with a birdie on the final hole – a 482-yard par five. Her one-over 37 on the inward nine left her even for the day, and one of eight players tied for 11th at 72. Yuen’s 14 pars on the day were third-most among all competitors.
Yuen stands just one shot out of seventh and two shots out of fourth heading into Saturday’s second round. Jennifer Kupcho of Wake Forest leads all golfers with a seven-under par 65, and is followed by Janet Mao of Northwestern (four-under 68) and Jillian Hollis of Georgia (three-under 69) in second and third, respectively.
Yuen finds herself fourth among individuals in the field. For the individual portion of the championship, the top three individuals among non-advancing teams will move to a final fourth round on Monday.