OSU Gets Ball Rolling In Spring Season Opener At Bay Area Classic

Feb. 13, 2003

CORVALLIS, Ore. - -

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TEEING OFF: Oregon State starts its spring season by competing in the Bay Area Classic from Feb. 18-19. Teams play 54 holes over two days, with 36 on Tuesday and 18 on Wednesday. A stroke-play format will be followed; teams consist of five players, with the low four scores counting toward the team total. Please note the tournament was originally scheduled for Feb. 17-18. San Francisco and California are the host institutions.

THE COURSE: Hiddenbrooke Country Club hosts the tournament, and the layout plays to roughly 6,200 yards with a par of 72. The hilly track features water on 14 of 18 holes, and carries a slope of 134-136. Hiddenbrooke has hosted the last two LPGA Samsung World Championships.

THE FIELD: Only 12 teams meet in Vallejo for the Classic, but among those are two of the nation's top teams in Washington, ranked seventh in the Golfweek poll, and Cal, which is ranked 11th. Joining Oregon State (ranked 51st) are UC-Irvine, Denver, Gonzaga, Hawaii, Long Beach State, Portland State, Weber State, San Francisco, and Nevada.

THE LINEUP: 1. Alex Lucio (So., Bogota, Colombia) (79.2/74/9 rds.) Alex will play in her fourth tournament of the year... most recently, tied for 52nd at the Watts/Palmetto Intercollegiate with a 231... equaled her career-best of 74 at the OSU/Shanico.

2. Stacie Ferguson (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.) (76.3/70/9 rds.) Stacie opened her season by tallying the best finish of her career at the OSU/Shanico, finishing tied for third with a 220... final-round 70 at the Shanico was the third 70 of her career and equaled the second-best round in OSU history... her 220 equaled the fourth-lowest three-round total in OSU history... leads the team in scoring average at 76.3.

3. Alex Lee (Fr., Lake Oswego, Ore.) (78.8/75/9rds.) Alex had her best tournament of the year to end the fall campaign, finishing tied for 32nd at the Watts/Palmetto tourney with a 231.

4. Laura Skinner (Jr., Boise, Idaho) (78.66/71/15 rds.) Laura equaled her career-best in the second round of the OSU Invitational, firing a 71 en route to a tie for 26th with a 230... most recently, finished tied for 48th at the Watts/Palmetto with a 237.

5. Ashlei Pendleton (Sr., Las Vegas, Nev.) (77.6/72/15 rds.) Ashlei had a strong opening tournament, finishing tied for 21st after shooting a 228... fired a 72 in the first round... most recently, tied for 54th at the Watts/Palmetto with a 240... finished 33rd or better in four of five tournaments.

Individual: Kelly Kerkvliet (So., Corvallis, Ore.) (81.6/80/3 rds) Kelly tied for 78th at the OSU/Shanico.

BEAVERS IN THE RANKINGS: The Beavers enter the week ranked 51st in the Golfweek rankings.

TOP-10 BEAVS: Just before the halfway point of the season the Beavers have already nailed down two top-10 finishes with their second-place finish at the Shanico and their ninth-place finish at the Ihlanfeldt; the team recorded two top-10 finishes during the entire 2001-2002 season.

MOST RECENT ACTION: OSU finished 11th at the College of Charleston's Watts/Palmetto Intercollegiate, led by Leah Whiting's 22nd-place finish. Whiting shot 227, which is the third-best score of the year for OSU, and the team finished with a 929.

HOW LOW CAN YOU GO?: After four tournaments, OSU individuals have posted four rounds of 72 or better. Last year, OSU recorded five.

HOME OF THE PAC-10 CHAMPIONSHIPS: Oregon State will host the 2003 Pac-10 Championships at Trysting Tree Golf Club. OSU has hosted the champioships once before in 1995 when the Beavers placed eighth overall.

THE CIVIL WAR PRESENTED BY NORTHWEST DODGE DEALERS: Oregon State and Oregon faced off in the OSU Shanico Invitational on Sept. 16-17, with the Beavers earning one point with the win to count toward the 2002-03 Civil War series standings. The schools meet again in the UCLA Pioneer Bruin Classic March 24-26.

HEAD COACH RISE LAKOWSKE ON THE TEAM: 'I think it was a much-needed winter break. It's good to have some time off to work on some things. With collegiate golf, there's often not time to work on anything technical because you're always playing. I think they used it wisely, and the weather has been great as well.'

LAKOWSKE ON THE TOURNAMENT FIELD: 'Cal and Washington are two top-10 (caliber) teams. It's a fairly small field, but there are definitely teams there that, if we beat them, we help ourselves. If we beat Cal or Washington, we help ourselves a bunch. This is a tournament where we can have a good showing, but it's also the first tournament of the year, and it's a difficult golf course, so it will be interesting to see how they do. It will be a good starting point for us - we'll know where we need to go and what we need to work on.'

LAKOWSKE ON THE COURSE: 'The last two LPGA World Championships have been held there. It's an extremely hilly golf course, so a 36-hole day will make it interesting to see the stamina level. Our team's in pretty good shape - they've been working out all year. It will be a good test for all the teams.'

LAKOWSKE ON PLAYERS WHO HAD GOOD OFFSEASON'S: 'Alex Lucio went home to Colombia, and she got to play quite a bit. She won the qualifier (for this tournament), which is a first for her. In fact, she led it the entire time. She's playing two to three shots better per round than in fall qualifying, so that's very helpful, especially if it carries over to the competitive end of it. I think it will.'

THE COACHES: Ris� Lakowske is in her 13th season at Oregon State - the longest tenure of any coach at Oregon State - and is the most successful women's golf coach in school history. Lakowske has taken the team to the NCAA West Regional eight of the last nine years, and was honored as the 1998 Far West District Coach of the Year. Lakowske is a former OSU student-athlete (1973-77).

Now in her second year, Angie Cates joined the OSU staff as the assistant coach for both the men's and women's programs in the fall of 2001. Cates came to OSU after playing professionally since 2000 on the Futures Tour and the Ladies Challenge Tour. The 1998 Washington State graduate worked three years as an associate producer for The Golf Channel before playing professionally. Cates was an Academic All-American at WSU, as well as an All-Pac-10 selection her senior year.

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