Wildcats Run Away With NCAA West Regional Title
May 12, 2001
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Arizona's Natalie Gulbis capped off her first-ever NCAA West Regional women's golf tournament with a 1-under 71 on Saturday to help her Wildcats to the team title and claim medalist honors in the process. The freshman shot a total of 9-under 207 at the par-72, 6,089-yard Trysting Tree Golf Club over the 54-hole tournament, while Arizona put up a team total of 4-over-par 868 to win by 20 strokes.
In the team battle to make the cut for NCAA Championship qualification, Washington took advantage of Tennessee's misfortune to move into seventh and earn a trip to the NCAA Championships in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida May 22-25.
The Huskies began the day in ninth, two shots back of Tennessee, who was in eighth, but the Volunteers struggled in the wind and turned in a 318 on Saturday to drop to 11th.
Southern California was the final team to make the cut at 916, which put the Trojans seven shots ahead of ninth-place Oregon and eight ahead of 10th-place Oregon State. OSU, which shot 924, improved on last year's 24th-place finish at the regionals.
Also making the trip to the championships from the West Regional will be Stanford, who took second, Michigan State, UCLA, Ohio State, and Arizona State.
Claiming the second spot in the individual race was Gulbis' teammate and fellow freshman Lorena Ochoa, who burned the course for a 69 on Saturday to shoot 210. Arizona, which teed off at 8:30 a.m., was able to finish before the wind kicked up to a steady 30 m.p.h. for the afternoon tee times. Ochoa came into the tournament ranked No. 1 in the country, and Gulbis held down the No. 3 ranking. Arizona was No. 2.
Jimin Kang of Arizona State, who fired the lowest round of the tournament on Friday with a 66, was third with a 3-under 213. Ohio State's Mollie Fankhauser finished in fourth at 214 and Kim Rowton of Stanford placed fifth with an even-par 216.
Tennessee's Young-A Yang, ranked fifth in the country, shot 221 to advance to the NCAAs as an individual. Memphis' Meaghan Francella qualified as an individual with a 222 as well.