AUSTIN -- Sophomore Danielle McVeigh fired a one-under-par 71 on Thursday to lead No. 8-seeded Texas A&M into sixth place after the opening round of the NCAA Women's Golf Central Regional at the UT Golf Club.
Freshman Sarah Zwartynski added an even-par 72 for the Aggies, who overcame a shaky start to shoot a seven-over 295. Top-seeded UCLA leads at 283.
The 21-team, 54-hole event continues through Saturday. The Aggies tee off at 12:30 p.m. on Friday and will be paired with LSU and Notre Dame. The top eight teams will advance to the NCAA Championship May 20-23 in Albuquerque.
A&M was six-over after four holes, but played the final 14 in just one-over. The Aggies were one-under on the closing nine.
"We got off to a little bit of a slow start but one of the things these girls do really well is keep fighting and they did a good job of that," A&M Coach Trelle McCombs said. "They settled down and started playing Aggie golf. We had a nice 1-2 punch with Danielle and Z. It's always good to have a 71 and 72 on the board."
TCU is two strokes back at 285, followed by Purdue (288), Denver (292), Nebraska (294), A&M and Florida State (298). Host Texas (299) rounds out the top eight.
UCLA's Maria Jose Uribe leads the individual standings by one shot after firing a seven-under 65. Purdue's Maria Hernandez had a 66. McVeigh is tied for 10th and Zwartynski is tied for 14th.
A&M junior Lauren Johnson carded a 75 (tied for 39th), sophomore Ashley Freeman shot a 77 (tied for 57th) and senior Miranda Orr had an 83 (tied for 97th).
McVeigh bogeyed the first hole, but bounced back with birdies on the 5th and 9th holes. She was one-over after a pair of bogeys early on the back nine, but posted consecutive birdies on the 15th and 16th.
Zwartynski birdied the 10th and 11th to go to one-under before closing with a bogey on the par-4 18th. Orr eagled the par-5 9th.
"This golf course sets up well for us so I look for us to play even better tomorrow," McCombs said.
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