Brooks ties mark, Duke wins UNC Tourney

Duke blew out the competition this weekend for its ninth-consecutive Lady Tar Heel Invitational victory in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The top-ranked Blue Devils placed four golfers in the top seven and cruised to a 21-stroke victory over runner-up Auburn for their second victory this season.

"I was really happy with my team's performance this weekend, especially on the final day," head coach Dan Brooks said.

Duke led the No. 7 Tigers by four strokes entering play in the final round Sunday and turned in a nine-under-par performance to finish three-under overall. Auburn struggled to an eight-over round, and the team was out of contention down the stretch.

The win was the 91st of Brooks' 22-year Duke career. He is now tied with Mark Gale, who was the coach at San Diego State from 1978 to 1996, for the most titles in NCAA Division I history.

Brooks will have his first chance to take over sole possession of the record when the team travels to Palo Alto, Calif. for the Stanford Women's Intercollegiate Oct. 21.

"It means a lot to me to be in company with Mark," Brooks said. "He ran a great program and is someone I respect very much."

Junior Anna Grzebien led Duke and finished in second place at two-under par. The other Blue Devils were not far off the pace set by Grzebien, last year's NCAA Individual Champion. Freshman Amanda Blumenherst finished one stroke behind Grzebien in third place and senior Liz Janangelo was two behind in fifth.

"I've been working really hard in the last few weeks, and it was really fulfilling to play so well," Janangelo said. "I'm really more happy that my whole team played well and got a victory, but I'm excited that my game is back on track."

Following a disappointing eight-over-par 80 in the tournament's opening round, freshman Jennie Lee finished in seventh place at one over par with team-best scores in the final two rounds.

"I took Jennie aside after the first round and told her not to worry about one day," Janangelo said. "I told her to go out and shoot a 65 Saturday."

The freshman almost met the goal, but fell just short of her captain's challenge when she fired a 69 Saturday and a four-under 68 in the tournament's final round.

The Blue Devils' fifth golfer, sophomore Jennifer Pandolfi, struggled in the opening two rounds, but rebounded and carded an even-par 72 in the final day of the tournament to finish 28th of 96.

Blumenherst moved into the top spot in Golfweek's individual rankings with this weekend's third-place performance, which followed her individual victory at the Mason Randolph Collegiate Classic earlier this season. Duke retained the top team ranking it captured last week and Grzebien, Lee and Janangelo all join Blumenherst in the top 50 individually.

"I'm more excited that my team is doing so well and we already have so much chemistry," Blumenherst said. "But it is really neat to come in as a freshman and do so well."


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