BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Marilen Fernandez Ruiz's two-over par 74 on a blustery cold Greystone Golf Club course Monday sets the Jacksonville State standout three shots in front after the first of the two-round Henry Griffitts Southern Shootout women's golf tournament hosted by Birmingham-Southern College. Ruiz turned the corner at 38 and fired a tournament best 36 on the back nine on a day which reached only 40 degrees and featured biting wind.
Ruiz stands three strokes ahead of Brooke Mangan of UAB and Shelley McGraw of Birmingham-Southern, who fired five-over par 77's. South Alabama's Susanne Jepson and JSU's Angie Green are tied for fourth place with six-over par 78s.
Jacksonville State leads the team event after placing three golfers in the top-15. The Gamecocks' total of 322 is 12 shots better than UAB's 334. Southern Miss is in third place with a 339 team total. Troy State and Tennessee Tech round out the top five while host Birmingham-Southern follows in sixth place.
Gardner-Webb and South Alabama are tied for seventh, four strokes behind BSC. Samford (358) and Nicholls State round out the top-10.
Low scores were not the order of the day as only five of the 71 total golfers broke 80. Only 18 broke 85.
Round two concludes the tournament on Tuesday at the par-72, 5,807-yard Founders Course at Greystone Golf Club.