At the 18th hole, Lena Schaeffner and Malene Kroboll Hansen found themselves in an usual spot.
The Coastal Carolina teammates were competing against each other for a title.
Schaeffner birdied the 295-yard par-4 and secured her second career individual victory in the 3M Jaguar Intercollegiate when Krolboll Hansen’s birdie attempt from 89 feet just missed.
Though only one of them could secure the individual honor, the duo led the Chanticleers to a six-stroke victory at Forest Hills Golf Club in Augusta, Ga.
“It was super close,” CCU coach Katie Quinney said. “They were literally tied on the last hole. Lena birdied the hole and Malene hit the ball in perfect position, giving herself a great opportunity to make birdie but just missed from 89 feet.”
While the situation also put Quinney in a strange spot, it was one she’d take any day.
“As a coach, you’re thrilled if either one wins,” she said.
Schaeffner, who entered the round tied for third, finished with a 3-under 68 to finish at 4-under 209, a stroke ahead of Krolboll Hansen (73), who started the round as the individual leader, and Furman’s Taylor Totland (69). Schaeffner’s total was the second-best three-round result in school history.
As a team, Coastal shot a final-round 4-over 288 to finish at 15-over 867, six strokes ahead of Kennesaw State and the Paladins.
It was the Chants’ third team win this season. They won the JU Classic (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) and Palmetto Intercollegiate (Kiawah Island) in the fall.
“It was great. Winning those two in the fall really helped to calm their nerves when they were in a position to do it again,” Quinney said. “They played great, but it was tight toward the end. Knowing we had the experience and the players we had, it was easy to relax and enjoy it.”
Coastal’s Bailey Cocca (73) tied for 15th (223), Frida Castillo (73) tied for 30th (227) and Emee Herbert (75) tied for 35th (230).
“Our driving of the ball and ball-striking was great. We had more birdie opportunities inside of 15 feet than I can ever remember,” Quinney said. “They executed very well. They kept out of trouble and drove the ball really well. They gave themselves lots of opportunities.”
Schaeffner, who also was medalist in the Palmetto Intercollegiate, provided the Chants’ third individual win this season. The other came in the JU Classic by Marissa Hinchman, who has not been in the lineup the last two weeks.
The reason, Quinney said, is the Chanticleers are simply so deep that she’s been the odd player out as of late.
“It’s such an advantage,” Quinney said of the depth. “Any given day anyone can be the hero. It’s really nice. It’s really showing the talent is more than there and the hard work is showing. It’s really coming together and we’re starting to see some really positive results.”
Coastal has two more tournaments on the schedule ahead of the Big South Championship in mid-April, and Quinney believes the team is on the ascent.
“It’s exciting to know they’re capable of all of this,” said Quinney, who has led CCU to 12 team titles since 2009. “We haven’t even peaked yet. We’re still leaving a lot out on the golf course. It’s exciting to know our best golf is yet to come.”