Vandals in middle of field
Courtesy: Idaho Athletic Media Relations
          Release: 05/05/2011
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University of Idaho juniors Kayla Mortellaro and Teo Poplawski are in the middle of the pack at the NCAA West Regional at Washington National Golf Club at Auburn, Wash.

Mortellaro is seven back of first-round leader Erica Popson of Tennessee after opening with a three-over 75, while Poplawski is eight-back after a first-round 76. Mortellaro is in a group tied for 26th and Poplawski is in a logjam at 41st.

"For the most part," coach Lisa Johnson said, "they played OK. They didn't shoot themselves out of it in the first round."

An exceptionally wet Washington National not only impacted club selection but fairways lies as well.

"The golf course played significantly longer today," Johnson said. "Because the golf course is playing so long, we don't get as many birdie opportunities as we normally would. We, when we have the opportunity, we need to make them."

Mortellaro's round included two birdies and five bogeys - all because she failed to make the green in regulation and convert the up-and-down. Poplawski had two birdies,  two bogeys and two doubles - on the result of an errant shot out of a fairway bunker and the other after taking a penalty stroke for hitting into a water hazard.

"Our club selection needs to be better," Johnson said.

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