The Carroll College golf team begins the Frontier Conference Golf Championship Monday at the ASU Karsten Course in Tempe, Arizona.
The Saints finished the regular season in third place in both the men's and the women's conference standings, but both teams have shown improvement over the spring and look primed to threaten conference leaders Rocky Mountain College and Lewis-Clark State.
The winner and individual medalists of the Frontier Championship will earn an automatic bid to the NAIA National Championships. The men's championship is held at TPC Deere Run in Silvas, Illinois. The women's championship takes place at the PGA National Course in Palm Beach Springs, Florida.
The Carroll women are led by freshman Cailin Spencer, who earned All-Frontier Conference second team honors, and Katie Goins, who is playing some of the best golf of her career this spring, notching a career-best round of 75 at the MSU Billings Open.
"I'm optimistic for the women; they have had a really good spring," coach Bennett MacIntyre said. "I would love to see that continue for this tournament. Katie has been playing extremely well, and Cailin Spencer has the ability to post a good score along with Rachel Miles."
Ben Gardner and Austin Egan both earned all-conference honors to lead the Saints men during the regular season, and senior Justin Galiher played well in the conference tournament a year ago on the same course.
"The guys have been a little inconsistent, but we've had some good individual performances," MacIntyre said. "I would like to see them get consistent across the board. We have a couple all-conference players, and we would love to make a move this week in Arizona."
The course is difficult. The men's track plays 7,002 yards with a par 71, while the women will play 5,891 yards and a par 72. The course, designed by Pete Dye, is a Scottish links style with rolling hills and undulations.
The tournament will take place Monday through Wednesday, with a shotgun start at 7:30 a.m. each day. Live scoring will be available via Birdiefire.com and the Birdiefire app.