The 12th-ranked Stanford women's golf team improved 12 strokes Saturday to climb into fourth place after two rounds of the NCAA Championships at Eugene Country Club.
After opening with a 7-over-par score of 295 on Friday, the defending national champion Cardinal rebounded with a 5-under 283 during mostly cool and overcast conditions.
USC, co-winners of the Stanford Regional Championships with the Cardinal, leads the way at 7-under 569. Showing the strength and talent of the Pac-12 Conference, Washington is second (574), UCLA third (577) and Stanford fourth (578).
"It was a nice round, but at the end of the day, really not that much changed," Cardinal coach Anne Walker said. "We still feel like we left a couple of shots out there and the strategy stayed the same. A couple more putts fell."
Especially for senior Mariah Stackhouse. She bounced back from a first-round 79 to shoot a team-best 3-under 69. Stackhouse missed only one fairway in regulation on the demanding, tree-lined layout and carded five birdies.
"Yesterday I was hitting some weird irons and just putting myself in bad places off the green and allowed that to get to me," said the three-time All-American. "Today I focused on my swing and putting and it just allowed me to play free golf."
Junior Casey Danielson followed up her 71 with a 2-under 70. She didn't record a hole-in-one, as she did Friday, but played steady golf and had only one bogey on her card.
Senior Lauren Kim and sophomore Shannon Aubert recorded 72s. Both recovered from double-bogeys with strong finishes, Kim making birdies on three of her last five holes and nearly added another on her last hole, the par-4 ninth. Aubert made four birdies.
"Doubles always fire me up to make birdies," said Kim, who credited several nice par saves for keeping her round going.
Danielson is tied for eighth at 3-under 141. Kim and Aubert share 38th at 2-over 146, while Stackhouse is tied for 67th at 4-over 148. Freshman Sierra Kersten (76) is tied for 101sth at 8-over 152.
The individual leader is Dewi Weber of Miami at 9-under 135.
All 24 teams compete Sunday, with the low 15 qualifying for the final round of medal play on Monday. The top eight advance to match play on Tuesday.