CORAL SPRINGS, FLA. – Halfway through their spring schedule, the Florida Southern women's golf team is now ranked No. 13 in the country in the March 15 Division II Women's Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) National Poll. The Moccasins fell one spot from their previous ranking and are still one of eight teams from the Sunshine State Conference in the poll.
Dallas Baptist remained No. 1, but the Patriots split the first-place votes down the middle with the new No. 2 team, Barry. The Buccaneers jumped ahead of Nova Southeastern and Indianapolis to claim the second position after winning their second tournament of the spring and finishing ahead of Dallas Baptist, Nova and UIndy in the most recent one at Cal State San Marcos. Prior to that, Dallas Baptist had won five straight tournaments against Division II competition. The only D-II teams to finish ahead of Dallas Baptist this year are now Indianapolis in early September and Barry this week.
The Patriots hold a 294-285 edge in total points at the top of the poll, with Nova Southeastern still third with 277 points, and Indianapolis dropping two spots to fourth, now with 265 points. West Texas A&M completes the top-five with 234 points, up three spots from its previous ranking.
The second five has Arkansas Tech and Cal State San Marcos at No. 6 and No. 7 respectively, with SSC schools Lynn and Rollins tied for No. 8. Florida Tech at No. 10 gives the SSC three consecutive schools in the poll, and five of the top-10.
Grand Valley State (MI) and Findlay (OH) dropped out of the top-10 this week, but only down to 11 and 12, with Florida Southern one spot behind them at No. 13.
Saint Leo at No. 16, and Tampa at No. 21 round out the eight SSC teams that are in the poll, again the most for any conference in the country.
In their most recent tournament, the Moccasins tied for fifth at the Peggy Kirk Bell Invitational where they defeated Rollins as well as two other top-25 teams that are also South Region opponents (No. 22 Lee and No. 21 Tampa). Two of the other teams they defeated are among those receiving votes in the new WGCA poll (Lenoir-Rhyne and Wingate) and are regional opponents as well.
Junior Amanda Gartrell and senior Tori Higgins continue to lead Florida Southern in stroke average, though Higgins was forced to miss the Peggy Kirk Bell Invitational due to illness. Gartrell had the Mocs' best score in two of the three rounds in that tournament, but freshman Loren Perez was their top finisher overall, tying for 11th place in the field of 86.
Florida Southern's next tournament is March 25-26 in Miami Lakes at the Barry University Invitational.
For the complete March 15 NCAA Division II poll, click here.