SOUTH FOR SPRING BREAK: The James Madison women's golf team will continue its 2010-11 spring season with a trip south for a pair of tournaments during the University's week-long Spring Break.
The first tournament, hosted by the
University of Florida, is a two-day, 54-hole event played at the Mark Bostick
Golf Course, March 6-7 on the campus of University of Florida in Gainesville,
Fla. The teams will play the first 36 holes on the first day of the tournament,
Mon. March 6, before playing the final round the following morning.
In their second tournament of the
week, the Dukes will host the JMU/Eagle Landing Invitational at Eagle Landing
Golf Club, March 11-13 in Jacksonville, Fla. Besides JMU, 17 teams will
participate in the three-day, 54-hole event. This is the third year of the
tournament and the field has grown every season.
STARTING THE SEASON RIGHT:
In their first tournament of the spring, the
Dukes sat atop the leaderboard after a first-round 296, their best round of the
season, before fading slightly to finish in 10th place out of 33 teams at the 2011 Kiawah Island
Intercollegiate at the Cougar Point and Oak Point Golf Courses in Kiawah Island,
S.C., Feb. 20-22.
JMU finished the tournament with a
score of 916 (296-315-305), just one stroke behind ninth-place Elon and two
behind eighth-place Central Arkansas. Miami shot a 888 (296-297-295) to win by
nine strokes over runner-up Campbell's 897 (299-301-297).
Leading the way for the Dukes was
senior Mary Chamberlain
(Dennis, Mass./Suffield Academy), who fired a
career-best 3-under 69 to hold a share of the first-day lead before finishing
in a tie for 19th at 9-over 225 (69-78-78). It was the first top-20 finish for
a JMU golfer in the spring season. Freshman Ginger Mak
China) played consistently all weekend, finishing tied for 33rd with a 12-over
Senior Laura Mesa
(Manizales, Colombia/Colegio Granadino) was next in a tie for 39th at 14-over
230 (75-81-74), while senior teammate Nicole Sakamoto
Hawaii/Kalani) recovered from a difficult second round to finish tied for 76th
at 20-over 236 (76-85-75). Junior Valentina Sanmiguel
Colombia/Gimasio La Montana) finished out the team scoring in a tie for 104th
at 26-over 242 (76-82-84).
COACH GOODEN WEIGHS IN:
When asked about the first tournament of the
spring season, Head Coach Paul Gooden
was optimistic. "I'm very proud of
my girls," Gooden said. "We're going to be just fine."
According to Gooden, the area of
emphasis for the team right now is the mental aspects of the game. "We're
reallly stressing confidence and self-talk," Gooden said. "We don't ever want
to be scared of failure or doing something wrong. Our team goal is to win the
conference championship and everything leading up to that is a learning
WEEKEND PERFORMANCES MAKE ALL-TIME LISTS:
Besides being the best round of her career, the 3-under 69 shot by senior Mary
(Dennis, Mass./Suffield Academy) in the first round of the
Kiawah Island Classic is tied for the fourth-best round in program history.
The team's 8-over 296 effort in
the first round was the 11th-best gross round in program history and the
ninth-best in relation to par.
ALL-TIME LEADERS DOT TOURNAMENT ROSTER:
Of the five Dukes that played last weekend at the Kiawah Island Classic,
four of them rank within the top nine spots in career scoring average in
program history. Junior Nicole Sakamoto
(Honolulu, Hawaii/Kalani) tops
the list with a program-best scoring average of 76.80 through 74 career rounds.
With her performance this weekend,
senior Mary Chamberlain
(Dennis, Mass./Suffield Academy) edged into
sixth place with an average of 78.09 through 99 rounds, narrowly edging out
fellow senior Laura Mesa
(Manizales, Colombia/Colegio Granadino), who
owns a 78.12 average after 97 career rounds. Junior Valentina Sanmiguel
Colombia/Gimasio La Montana) also checks in at ninth place with a 79.08 average
through 60 career rounds.
The Dukes have a full slate of tournaments this spring, with at
least five more tournaments on the horizon, including three during the month of
March. In the coming weeks, JMU will play three tournaments in 17 days as it
travels to Gainesville, Fla., Mar. 6-7 for the SunTrust Gator Invitational,
hosts the JMU/Eagle Landing Invitational in Jacksonville, Fla., Mar. 11-13, and
plays in the John Kirk/Panther Intercollegiate in Stockbridge, Ga., Mar. 21-22.
The Dukes will then head to Wallace, N.C., for the UNCW Lady Seahawk Classic,
Apr. 4-5 before traveling to storied Pinehurst, N.C., for the CAA Women's Golf
Championship, Apr. 22-24.
FALL IN REVIEW:
The fall of 2010 was a season of experimenting for the
Dukes, as Head Coach Paul Gooden
used three different lineups over the
course of four tournaments. Only junior Nicole Sakamoto
and senior Catrin
played every round for JMU.
While the Dukes did not finish
better than eighth in any of their four fall tournaments, all seven members of
the team finished the fall with a scoring average of 80.1 or below. All seven
Dukes also recorded at least one round of 75 or lower.
Freshman Ginger Mak
Dukes in scoring average in her first collegiate season, carding a 76.9 average
in eight rounds played this past fall. Mak was also the only Duke to fire a 73
on two occasions, doing so once in the first round of the Mercedes-Benz Women's
Collegiate Championship in Knoxville, Tenn., and then again in the final round
of the season at the Lady Paladin Invitational in Greenville, S.C.
Sakamoto also continued her solid
play from the 2009-10 season, finishing the fall just behind Mak with a 77.3
average over four tournaments. Her career average rose slightly to 76.7, but
remains the lowest on the team as of the end of the fall season. Sakamoto also
recorded her first top-10 finish of the 2010-11 season, and the only one of the
fall for the Dukes, by firing a 231 (76-77-78) at the Lady Paladin Invitational
to tie for eighth.
RETURNING ALL-CAA GOLFERS:
James Madison returns two All-CAA golfers
from the 2009-10 season in junior Nicole Sakamoto
Hawaii/Kalani) and senior Catrin Gunnarsson
Gymnasiet). There is also a third All-CAA golfer in the lineup as
(Dennis, Mass./Suffield Academy) earned
the honor in 2008-09.
NEW PRACTICE FACILITY EXPANDS:
opened its new outdoor short-game practice facility this fall. The facility
includes designated chipping and putting greens, with fairway, rough and sand
traps for practice. This spring, the facility will see various improvements,
including reformed tee boxes and a
30-yard lengthening of the hitting range, allowing for the practice of drives
off the tee.
This facility adds to the indoor
practice facility, with video replay/analysis capabilities, and both programs
receiving new locker room space in Godwin Hall.
CAPTURES HAWAII STROKE PLAY TITLE:
Rising junior Nicole Sakamoto
A native of Honolulu, Sakamoto was
steady throughout the tournament, including shooting an even-par 72 in the
final round to take her first major Hawaii women's title. The three-day total
was the lowest winning score in five years and ended a streak of a combined
five top-five finishes in the tournament and the Jennie K. without a win, as
well as her 2008 loss in the final of the state Women's Match Play
Sakamoto entered the final round
trailing Galdiano by four shots, but Sakamoto tied for the low final round with
her 72, while the youngster faded down the stretch to shoot 81 and finish as
runner-up at 8-over 224.
continued her solid play from the 2009-10 collegiate season and captured the
2010 Hawaii State Women's Stroke Play Championship this past summer at
Mid-Pacific Country Club in Kailua, Hawaii. Sakamoto won the tournament by five
shots with a 54-hole total of 3-over 219, five shots better than Mariel
Galdiano at 224.
CHAMBERLAIN NAMED NGCA All-AMERICAN SCHOLAR:
Senior women's golfer Mary
(Dennis, Mass./Suffield Academy) was named to the 2010 National
Golf Coaches Association (NGCA) All-American Scholar Team, as announced by the
organization. She was among 494 women's collegiate golfers at the Division I,
II & III levels honored with this award for their work in the classroom and
on the course.
After missing most of the 2008-09
season, Chamberlain bounced back to play in all 11 Madison tournaments,
finishing second on the team with a 76.3 stroke average in 30 rounds played,
earning a place on the All-Colonial Athletic Assocation second team. She carded six rounds below 75, including
shooting a career-low 70 twice. She finished
in the top five three times and in the top 20 six times, including a season-best
tie for second at Tina Barrett Invitational in April. She also placed sixth at
the 2010 CAA Championship, finishing at 232, to help the Dukes to a runner-up
Entering her final season with the
Dukes, Chamberlain carries a 3.52 cumulative GPA. She is a Justice Studies major with a
concentration in Criminology.
A VETERAN LINEUP DOTS THE 2010-11 SQUAD:
The Dukes return all five
starters from last year's CAA Championships to this year's squad. The team is
led by 2010 All-CAA honorees junior Nicole Sakamoto
Hawaii/Kalani) and senior Catrin Gunnarsson
Gymnasiet), as well as seniors Mary Chamberlain
Academy) and Laura Mesa
(Manizales, Colombia/Colegio Granadino) and
junior Valentina Sanmiguel
(Bogota, Colombia/Gimasio La Montana). They
will be pushed for spots in the lineup
by two freshman in Ginger Mak
(Hong Kong, China) and Sara
The team is also a blend of
international flavor, with three Americans (Chamberlain, Sakamoto and Stanley)
along side two South Americans (Mesa and Sanmiguel), one European (Gunnarsson) and one Asian (Mak).
HEAD COACH PAUL GOODEN:
Head Coach Paul
is starting his 12th season as the women's golf head coach of the
Dukes. During his tenure as head coach, Madison has captured three Colonial
Athletic Association Championships and earned a team berth in the 2005 NCAA
East Regional. This past season, one of his golfers, Nicole Sakamoto, became
the first JMU golfer to earn two individual berths to the NCAA Regionals.