STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) – After posting a school record-tying 6-under-par 210 in the M&F Bank Rebel Intercollegiate, 24th-ranked Ally McDonald garnered Player of the Week honors from the Southeastern Conference for the second time this season.
“It’s an honor to be able to represent Mississippi State and show everyone the progress we are making,” McDonald said. “I first have to thank God for the ability he has given me as well as my coaches and teammates. We’ve brought this program a long way and are still working to improve. This is just a reflection on how well we are playing right now. I’m excited to see what we can do at the SEC’s and in the postseason.”
McDonald opened last weekend’s Rebel Intercollegiate with a first-round 4-under-par 68, which tied a school record for the lowest opening round and tied for the third-lowest round overall. She posted the second-best 36-hole tally in program history with a 5-under-par 139 before her record-tying 6-under performance.
The 210 card tied Beth Irwin’s tally in the 2004 Chrysler ACC/SEC Challenge for the lowest tournament card in MSU history.
The sophomore finished third individually, which marks the fourth time in the last six events McDonald has turned in a Top 5 finish. She has finished in the Top 20 in all nine events this season.
McDonald paced the Lady Bulldogs to a 24-over-par 888 en route to tying No. 29 LSU and beating SEC-foes Ole Miss and Missouri. MSU’s opening-round 289 tied for the second-lowest single round in Maroon and White history, while its 36-hole score (588) is third-lowest and its 54-hole card (888) ranks fourth-best. State’s sixth-place card also tied the school record for consecutive Top 10 finishes (9).
The Fulton, Miss., native owns a 72.41 average clip this season, which ranks third-best in the SEC and 16th nationally. Her average card is on pace to shatter the Lady Bulldogs’ current single-season scoring average record held by Amanda Mathis at 74.20.
McDonald’s career average of 73.42 is also on pace to break MSU’s career stroke average record held by Sofie Anderson at 74.86 and she is only four birdies shy of breaking MSU’s all-time single season record (84).
“Ally is a special player for this program and Mississippi State,” third-year MSU coach Ginger Brown-Lemm said. “She is a model individual and leader that relentless works to improve her craft and push her teammates to better themselves as well. Ally has been playing better and better the last few weeks so I’m excited to see how well she will play in the SEC Championship and postseason.”
This is the third weekly conference recognition received by McDonald as she was named SEC Freshman of the Week on March 28, 2012, and SEC Player of the Week on March 20 of this season.
An MSU golfer has been recognized by the conference four of the last five weeks. Men’s golfer Chad Ramey was named Player of the Week on March 13 prior to McDonald’s March 20 selection. Axel Boasson earned conference honors just a week ago on March 3.
The Lady Bulldogs return to action Friday, April 20, in the SEC Championship hosted by Greystone Country Club in Birmingham, Ala.