Nittany Lion Invitational brings the positive side of the Braves – The Bradley Scout

The Bradley women’s golf team was placed eighth at the Payne Stewart Memorial. Photo courtesy of Bradley Athletic.

Last weekend, the Bradley women’s golf team competed against strong programs from the Power Five Conferences at the Nittany Lion Invitational in Pennsylvania. The Braves finished 11th out of 16 competing teams in their second invitation to the youth season.

The team played 54 holes on a total of 911 strokes, 11 short of their show last week at the Redbird Invitational. Bradley has improved every round, shooting 308, 304 and recently 299.

Junior Grace Armando scored eight over 224 points, to finish 25th in the competition. Followed by senior Mara Flaherty with 227, sophomore Maria Berakis shooting 233, freshman Alison Pacocha shooting 233 and junior Harriet Parker shooting 235.

Coach Haley Morell liked the improvement she saw on a tougher track that was away from home and against tougher competition.

“We hit the ball really well [last] The weekend,” Morrell said. “We ran the course a lot better; We struggled a bit in the short game with pegs and chopping and score placement. But managing the course and limiting high numbers was much better than the week before.”

Armando, the lowest goal scorer, scored two goals above par, 74 in the first round, 76 in the second and 74 in the third. For her, she felt ready for her second championship of the season.

“It caught on a bit and I wanted to live up to my own expectations, so I felt very motivated,” Armando said.

The transfer to junior college from Seminole State knew she had a constant struggle on the green, but she used it to give herself something to work on this week at the upcoming Johnie Imes Invitational.

“I was feeling very steady, almost very consistent,” Armando said. “I hit the ball really well; I hit a lot of greens, probably the most I’ve hit in a long time. I just didn’t let my shots go, but that was a consistent problem at least.”

Morell believes there has been a lot of improvement between the last two races and the team is on a great path to keep moving forward.

“I think the last round, even on a tough golf course with a really high roughness, shows our potential and where we are,” Morell said. “We’ve advanced a lot of positions even with stiff competition, so I think we can really use that momentum as we move into Mizzou this week.”

Morell and Aromando agree that momentum has become the key to the team’s success.

“I kind of want to keep learning, so I can keep growing,” Armando said. “I think the team at Penn State showed what we can do on that last day. I think we’re going to take that momentum at Miso.”

The team heads to Columbia, Missouri, for the Johnie Imes Invitational on Monday.

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