HPU Women’s Golf Recap: Kahn Earns Medalist Honors as Multiple Records Fall

Site: Wallace, N.C.
Course: River Landing Golf Club – Landing Course (Par 72, 5,960 yards)
Tournament: River Landing Classic
HPU Team Standing: 7th of 13 teams (298-296-279-873, +9)
Top HPU Individual: Sarah Kahn, 1st (69-70-64-203, -13)
Next HPU Round: Monday, March 15 — at UAB Spring Invitational (Birmingham, Ala.)

WALLACE, N.C. – Redshirt sophomore Sarah Kahn had the best round any member of the High Point University women’s golf team has ever had in the final round of the River Landing Classic on Tuesday (March 9), firing a bogey-free 64 to propel her to the first individual victory of her career.

Kahn went under par all three rounds at the River Landing Golf Club this week, totaling 16 birdies and an eagle, and just three bogeys and one double bogey. Her score of 64 surpassed the program record of 66, which just so happened to also be set in the final round of the River Landing Classic, back in 2018. Kahn’s total of 203 strokes in the event is also a program record for 54 holes, breaking her own record by eight strokes set last year at the GolfWeek Program Championship.

Kahn is now the 11th Panther to earn medalist honors at an event and improved her birdie total to 143 in her career, moving her into fifth place on HPU’s all-time birdie leaderboard. Her teammate Samantha Vodry currently sits atop the list and added to her lead with 12 birds in the three rounds, including seven of her own on Tuesday with also no bogeys for a 65, the second-best round any member of the Purple and White has ever fired that moved her into the top-10 in a tie for sixth. Vodry now has a total of 276 birdies in 112 rounds for an average of 2.46, the best of any High Point golfer with at least 50 rounds played. Kahn’s average is right behind Vodry’s, improving to 2.42 after carding 16 of them.

“I feel like a broken record but it can’t be overstated what a formidable duo Samantha and Sarah have become for us,” head coach Alexis Bennett said after the round.

“To combine for 15 birdies and no bogeys in the same round is something that you don’t see every day. I love the way these two carry themselves and go about their business in competition. It takes a strong mentality to get it going like they did today and keep pressing for more.”

As a team, the Panthers broke a record for the lowest team round with a 279 on Tuesday, taking down the old record by seven strokes. Bennett adds another tournament to her long list of top rounds as the head of the program, now holding 10 of the 11 lowest rounds in team history. The score to-par of nine-under on Tuesday is also a record and is just the fourth time HPU has shot under par as a team, all four of which have come under Bennett’s watch. High Point missed setting a 54-hole record by a single stroke, coming in at 873 over the three rounds at +9.

After having to finish the final three holes of round two before beginning the final round, High Point was the biggest mover of the last 18 holes, climbing three spots from 10th to seventh before the round was over. Kahn was lights out from the beginning, hopping on the birdie train with four in her first five holes and then adding three more after the turn for a total of seven in her opening nine. She made one more before the round was over and parred out to get the first title of her career.

Vodry had her birdies spread out a little bit more, also birdieing her first hole of the day but then waiting four more holes before adding another. It wasn’t long before she too hopped on the birdie train, stringing together three in a row and four in a stretch of five holes to vault her from 24th to sixth – the largest jump of the day. Not only did Kahn and Vodry have the two best rounds in HPU history on the day, they also had the two best rounds of the entire event.

With Kahn going under par in all three rounds and Vodry in two, the duo became the first two golfers in program history to record 20 rounds of par or better. Vodry’s 65 gave her a program-high of 21 such rounds while Kahn is right behind her with 20 rounds of at least par.

“The course setup this week was obviously favorable with a lot of chances to score,” Bennett continued. “We’re still searching for more out of the bottom of our lineup but today’s round certainly proved that we belong and can be competitive against some great programs. I absolutely love that never giving up and consistently shaving strokes off over the course of an event have become engrained characteristics of our program.”

Olivia John had the next-best round for the Panthers on Tuesday, finishing one-over on the day. She started her round off in just about the best way possible, carding an eagle-2 on the 342-yard par-4 – her opening hole. John’s eagle brings High Point’s total up to three after just two events, tied for the fourth-most eagles the Panthers have carded in a single season. Bennett-led teams have now had at least three eagles in every season she’s been in charge for, with the current record of seven set during the 2018-19 campaign.

The Panthers will look to transfer their momentum from the final round into their next event on Monday (March 15), the UAB Spring Invitational in Birmingham, Ala.