Midwestern State struggled to the finish in the opening round of the Arkansas-Fort Smith Lions Classic Monday afternoon at the Par-70, 5,825-yard course at the Hardscrabble Country Club.
The Mustangs, however, carry a five-stroke lead over Newman (Kan.) in the final round set for Tuesday morning.
"These are the worst greens we've played on all year long and still putted O.K.," MSU coach Jeff Ray said. "We had to make adjustments and worked hard on not getting frustrated. We didn't particularly have a great ending, but I was proud that we were able to put five scores of 80-or-better up."
Senior Brenna Moore tops the individual leaderboard posting a 4-over 74 in the opening round taking a one-stroke lead over teammate Sierra Campbell and Arkansas-Fort Smith's Anne Stiles.
Freshman Sarah Moore lost three strokes over the final half of the back nine before finishing with a 7-over 77 to tie for sixth, while sophomore Hayley Dambold also surrendered strokes down the stretch before posting a 9-over 79 to tie for ninth.
"There is no question the girls are getting better. With four holes to go, we were looking really great," Ray said. "I was proud of the girls. They have worked really hard and it's starting to pay off."
Sophomore Kellie Martin carded a 10-over 80 to tie for 14th to round out the Mustangs' team scores, while junior Kynze Mann logged 14-over 84 to tie for 25th while competing as an individual medalist.