Taking Over the Top Spot

Commodores in front after 36 holes at the Mason Rudolph Championship

by Ben Schomberg

FRANKLIN, Tenn.— Spurred by two rounds in the 60s on Saturday, Vanderbilt sits at the top of the leaderboard after 36 holes at the Mason Rudolph Championship.

Natasha Kiel fired a 6-under-par 66 and Tillie Claggett carded a 67 in the second round of the tournament at the Vanderbilt Legends Club, helping the Commodores post an 18-under-par 558 total and build a two-stroke advantage over Arizona. Mississippi State is in third place in the team standings four shots behind the Wildcats entering the final day of play.

Kiel tied the third-lowest round by a Vandy student-athlete in Mason Rudolph history after collecting seven birdies, helping the sophomore move into a tie for 13th place in the individual standings. Claggett’s bogey-free round was keyed by an eagle on the par-five fourth hole, as she would go on to add three birdies to end the afternoon tied with Auburn’s Megan Schofill for the individual lead with a 7-under-par 137 two-day score.

“What a day. I’m so proud of these girls for coming out and doing their thing,” Vandy head coach Greg Allen said. “It was great watching Nat play today. She played with so much confidence. Tillie continues to be impressive. She’s got the length that can overpower a golf course and it’s showing so far; she’s putted for eagle on six of the eight par fives the last two days.”

Celina Sattelkau is tied for fifth at 5-under par following a second-round 70 and Lynn Lim sits in seventh one shot behind her after posting a 72 on Saturday.

“Celina continues to do Celina things and was really close to posting a low number,” Allen said. “And I’m proud of how Lynn handled herself today. It’s not always easy playing in the one spot as a freshman, I thought she looked very mature. She handled her emotions very well.”

Tess Davenport rounded out the team standings after recording a second-round 73. Competing as individuals this weekend, Megan Meserole shot a 72, Virginie Ding a 75, Ariel Yu a 79 and Jayna Choi an 80 on Saturday. 

“I’m excited for our team tomorrow and I can’t wait to see how they handle this opportunity,” Allen said. “We’ve talked about staying in the moment and focusing on the things that we can control.”

The Commodores will attempt to capture the Mason Rudolph Championship trophy for the first time since 2018 on Sunday, beginning play at 9:40 a.m. alongside Arizona and Mississippi State. Live scoring for the event can be found HERE.