Simi Valley, Calif. / Royal
Though Carleton women's golf standout Shannon Holden (Simi Valley, Calif./Royal) was playing in her first career MIAC Women's Golf Championship, she navigated the three-day tournament like a seasoned veteran to claim individual medalist honors while leading the Knights to a second-place finish. Carleton's first-year phenom broke free from a three-way tie atop the leader board on the final day to finish first, while her team came up just one stroke behind champion St. Thomas in the closest team finish in tournament history. For her performance, Holden was named the MIAC Women's Golf Athlete-of-the-Week.
Holden started the tournament with a 5-over-par 77 in each of the first two rounds, and she sat in a three-way tie for first place entering Monday's decisive 18 holes. However, Holden rose to the occasion, carding the best round of the day with a 3-over par 75 to finish with 229, two shots ahead of the rest of the field. In addition to her individual MIAC title, Holden headlined the All-Championship Team, and will automatically receive All-Conference honors in May. In the process, Holden helped the Knights shoot 952 as a team - the third-best 54-hole score in tournament history - and finish just a shot behind the Tommies in second place. This season, Holden's 78.9 scoring average is tied for the second-best in the MIAC, and she is one of just three players with an average under 80.
The second-place finish equals the Knights' best showing at the MIAC Championships, as they were also the runner-up a year ago. Holden and her teammates will now take the rest of the fall and winter off, and will return to action in the spring with five tournaments on the schedule, and the hope of joining St. Thomas at the 2013 NCAA Women's Golf Championships with an at-large bid.