ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Old Dominion women's golf team placed 12th at the UCF Challenge, its first tournament of the spring season, this week at Eagle Creek Golf Club in Orlando.
The Monarchs, who competed without their No. 1 player in Maggie Simmermacher, fired an even round as a team on Tuesday to climb one spot on the leaderboard. ODU was one of just five teams to shoot an even round or better on Tuesday.
"We made huge improvements each day and that's a sign of a great team," said head coach Mallory Hetzel. "I thought everyone played with a lot of heart in the final round."
Miami (+4), ranked 41st, won the 16-team event that featued seven squads ranked in the top 50 nationally.
Individually, Abigail Portyrata (+4) was the highest-placing Monarch. Portyrata, in her first tournament at ODU, shot a three-under final round to finish in a tie for 16th. Portyrata's nine birdies for the event were tied for eighth most in the tournament field.
Katerina Vlasinova (+6) and Sana Tufail (+7) also registered top-30 finishes, tying for 24th and 29th, respectively. Vlasinova, Tufail and Portyrata all ranked in the top five in the field in par-3 scoring.
Miami's Dewi Weber (-7) took home the individual title.
"We have a lot of work to do before our next tournament and we look forward to the opportunity to compete again soon," said Hetzel. "We will be excited to get Maggie back in the lineup and see another great field at Louisville's tourney."
ODU returns to action Feb. 18-20 at the Louisville Moon Golf Invitational at Duran Golf Club in Melbourne, Florida.
TEAM LEADERBOARD 1. #41 Miami (FL) (+4) 2. #38 East Carolina (+8) 3. #34 Auburn (+14) 4t. #29 Vanderbilt (+16) 4t. #27 Wisconsin (+16) 6. #26 Iowa State (+17) 7. UCF (+19) 8. Mississippi State (+21) 9t. Penn State (+24) 9t. SMU (+24) 11. #44 Texas Tech (+25) 12. Old Dominion (+26) 13t. College of Charleston (+42) 13t. Memphis (+42) 15. UNC Wilmington (+48) 16. Tulane (+52)