COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Indiana senior Danah Ford entered the 2004 season without one individual collegiate title. She entered this weekends Big Ten Championships with one, which came just a week ago. Now, the Indianapolis, Ind., native has a three-stroke lead with 18 holes to play, and a chance to win the biggest tournament of her college career, all while the Indiana womens golf team has a chance to win its first Big Ten title since 1998.
Indiana again carded the lowest round by any Big Ten team at 299. Indiana stands alone in first place at 904 (308-297-299), and will take a two-stroke lead over Ohio State (906) into the final 18 holes.
The Hoosiers and Buckeyes have long battled for the Big Ten title. The Hoosiers have won seven conference titles, just two back of Ohio State's league-leading nine championships. The Hoosiers have placed either first or second in 12 of the last 15 championships and have finished in the top three an amazing 18 of 22 years.
Ford entered the day in third, one-stroke back of Ohio States Allison Hanna and Wisconsins Malinda Johnson. That lead quickly vanished as Hanna shot a two-over-par 74 and Johnson struggled in the round with a five-over-par 77, while Ford had the lowest round of the day, a two-under-par 70.
Currently, Fords 216 (74-72-70) leads Ohio States Allison Hanna 219 (72-73-74) by three shots.
Fords 54-hole total of 216 is an Indiana best in the Hoosiers storied Big Ten Championships history. Karen Dennison held the old mark of 217, which she set last year.
Ford will look to maintain her lead Sunday and take home Big Ten medalist honors. Indiana has not had back-to-back individual Big Ten Championship titles since Erin Carney in 1998 and 1999.
Another Hoosier in close contention is senior and defending Big Ten Individual Champion, Karen Dennison. The Madison, Ind., native, stands in a tie for third entering the final round at 222 (76-71-75).
Senior Ambry Bishop (82-79-74) and sophomore Molly Redfearn (76-78-81) are both tied for 20th at 235. Bishop entered the day in a tie for 38th, but after shooting the fifth-best round of the day, 74, moves up 18 places.
Senior Mary Lidester is tied for 42nd at 243 (87-76-80), while junior Bethany Brunner is tied for 61st at 252 (90-82-80).
Indiana takes to the tee tomorrow for the final 18 holes beginning with tee-times at 8:00 a.m.
1 Indiana University 904(308-297-299)
2 Ohio State 906(301-299-306)
3 Purdue 918(305-310-303)
4 Michigan 925(312-305-308)
5 Wisconsin 926(306-305-315)
6 Michigan State 928(304-317-307)
7 Northwestern 934(313-305-316)
8 Iowa 936(311-312-313)
9 Illinois 943(312-313-318)
10 Penn State 948(313-319-316)
11 Minnesota 971(327-317-327)