Martinez, Siefert haul in major awards
Limestone College junior Pilar Martinez (Malaga, Spain) has been named the Conference Carolinas Women’s Golf Player of the Year and Zack Siefert earned conference Coach of the Year honors, highlighting a total of five Saints selected to the 2018-19 All-Conference Carolinas Team.
For the first time in program history, the Saints placed four golfers on the first team – Martinez, senior Reme Cortes (Madrid, Spain), sophomore Ebba Hellman (Ronninge, Sweden), and sophomore Hailey Cleary (Lexington, S.C.) – while Limestone grabbed five all-conference nods for the second straight year.
Sophomore Delanie Mortier (North Charleston, S.C.) picked up third-team accolades, marking only the second time in team history that the Blue and Gold has captured five All-Conference Carolinas selections. Limestone, who moved up to No. 12 in the WGCA Coaches Poll ahead of the NCAA South Regional, had a golfer named player of the year for a second straight season and the third time overall. Siefert won coach of the year recognition for a third consecutive season and the fourth time in five years.
Martinez has enjoyed a breakout season this year, compiling seven top-10 finishes and four top-5 placements. After placing third overall at the Peggy Kirk Bell Invitational and at the Division I Low Country Intercollegiate, she broke through with her first career tournament win at the conference championship.
A two-time Golfer of the Month award winner during the 2018-19 campaign, Martinez has carded 10 rounds at or below par this season. She fired a career-low 69 (-3) in the first round at the Peggy Kirk Bell Invitational and would finish the tournament with a combined 214 (-2) to place third overall.
Siefert guided the Saints to their second straight Conference Carolinas Championship and the program’s fifth title in six years. In addition to the conference tournament, the Saints also won the Patsy Rendleman Invitational and the Flagler Fall Slam in back-to-back outings while placing in the top-5 six times this year.
Cortes was named first team for the second straight year after posting six top-10 finishes and four top-5 placements. She was twice named the Conference Carolinas Golfer of the Month during her final season at Limestone and was the medalist at the Flagler Fall Slam after firing an even 144 over two rounds.
After picking up second-team honors as a freshman, Hellman was voted to the first team this year with four top-10 finishes and a pair of top-5 showings. She tallied a runner-up finish on the individual leaderboard at the Bearcat Invitational before placing third overall at the conference championship.
Despite missing almost a year and a half while recovering from an injury, Cleary was a first-team selection – her second career all-conference nod – with three top-5 finishes. In her first action back, she won the Converse Fall Invite with a combined 151 (+7) before placing fourth on two different occasions.
Coming on late in the year, Mortier was voted to the third team with three top-10 placements during the course of the season. She was the runner-up at the Converse Fall Invite before finishing fifth overall at the Coker Women’s Invitational before ending up ninth on the leaderboard at the Bearcat Invitational.
Currently sitting at sixth in the NCAA South Region rankings, the Saints will be making their second straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament and the program’s third overall. The field will be officially announced in the coming weeks.