Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas, proved to be a tough test of golf this week at the NCAA Women's Golf Championship. The difficult course, combined with a few weather delays, made for high-scoring rounds from teams across the board, including IU.
“It’s a challenging golf course, and it should be because this is for the National Championship,” IU Coach Clint Wallman said. “On a course like this, if you get it going sideways a little bit, it can be a big number.”
After three rounds of stroke play, IU was eliminated from competition after placing 21st out of 24 teams. Only the top 15 teams advanced to a fourth round of stroke play.
IU entered the week as the lowest-ranked team in the field. Although it was unable to snatch a top-15 finish, the team did show steady improvement through its three rounds of play.
After opening with a team score of 322 in round one, IU bounced back with a 313 in round two and a 309 in round three. Its 21st place finish is the school’s best finish at the NCAA Championship in 21 years.
Paving the way for the Hoosiers was sophomore Mary Parsons, whose rounds of 80, 77 and 77 put her in a tie for 66th on the individual leaderboard at 15-over par. Parsons’ finish is the best from an IU golfer at the NCAA Championship since Erin Carney tied for 20th in 1998.
Duke University, who defeated University of Arizona in the semi-final, will compete against Wake Forest University, who defeated Auburn University in the other semi-final, for the NCAA Championship. From here on out, a match play format will determine the winner.
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