Women's Golf Faces Off Against Nation's Best At Auburn

Oct. 30, 2002

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Teeing Off: Arizona will learn where it stands among the nation's best women's college golf squads as it closes its fall season at the Auburn Tiger-Derby Invitational. The Wildcats head to Auburn, Ala., for the three-day, 54-hole tournament which runs Friday through Sunday. The top five teams and seven of the top 10 teams in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin performance index will compete this weekend.

Tournament Schedule: Split tees will be used for first and second round play Friday and Saturday beginning at 7 a.m. MST. Arizona will play with Vanderbilt nd South Carolina on Friday, teeing off from hole no. 10 at 7 a.m. MST. Tee-times for Saturday and Sunday will be detemrined later. Practice rounds will be played on the tournament course Thursday.

Course: The Auburn University Club will be the site of the 2002 edition of the annual tournament. This year, the track will be set to a length of 6,283 yards and a par of 72.

Tournament Field: Arizona, Auburn, Duke, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana State, Oklahoma State, South Carolina, Southern California, Tennessee, Texas, Texas Christian, Vanderbilt.

Wildcat Lineup and 2002-03 Statistics:Golfer	Year	Avg.	Top 10/20	Low Rnd.	EventsErica Blasberg	Fr.	72.55	2/0	69	3Miriam Kraschinski	So.	74.55	2/0	70	3Anne Lee	Sr.	75.37	1/0	73	3Julia Kraschinski	Sr.	77.00	0/0	73	2Mar Garcia	So.	79.66	0/0	79	1Katie Christy*	Fr.	Makes career debut after redshirt year in 2001-02* will compete as an individual

Last Time Out at the Stanford-Pepsi Invitational: Erica Blasberg claimed individual medalist honors at the Stanford Women's Intercollegiate to earn her first career victory and Arizona's second individual win of the season. Blasberg, a freshman from Corona, Calif., tallied a three-round total of 211 (-5) to win the event by five strokes over New Mexico State's Alena Sharp. After opening the event with a one-over 73, Blasberg played the final 36 holes at six-under par. She was the only player in the field of 93 to finish under par in each of the last two rounds. Her efforts helped the top-ranked Wildcats to a fifth place finish in the 17-team field. The Cats carded a three-round total of 900 (+36) to finish 15 strokes behind tournament-winner California. Also competing for the Wildcats were seniors Anne Lee and Julia Kraschinski, who tied for 30th place at 228 (+12), sophomore Miriam Kraschinski, who tied for 49th place at 234 (+18), and sophomore Mar Garcia, who tied for 66th place at 239 (+23).

Last Year at the Auburn Tiger-Derby Invitational: Lorena Ochoa continued her dominant sophomore season by winning her fourth consecutive tournament as she carded a final-round 70 to finish six strokes ahead of Georgia's Summer Sirmons and Tennessee's Young-A Yang at the Auburn Tiger-Derby Invitational. Arizona finished fourth at 35-over-par 899. Georgia took first place with a three-day team total of 21-over-par 885. Eight of the top-10 ranked teams in the nation competed in the 54-hole tournament. Ochoa's six-stroke victory marked her eighth career win. The final round saw Ochoa shoot par or better for the ninth time in 11 rounds this season. The sophomore posted a 54-hole total of 6-under-par 210. Junior Anne Lee contributed to the Wildcats' success with a three-round score of 12-over-par 228, good for a tie for 24th place. Laura Myerscough, a junior from Charleston, Ill., closed the tournament tied for 21st place at 11-over-par. Freshman Miriam Kraschinski tied for 39th place at 18-over-par, while junior Julia Kraschinski tied for 52nd at 26-over-par. Senior Cathie Williamson competed as an individual and tied for 60th place.

Blasberg Breaks On Through: Freshman Erica Blasberg is already continuing the tradition of success by first-year players in the Wildcat women's golf program as she owns the team's lowest scoring average and has one tournament title under her belt. Including her victory at the Stanford-Pepsi Intercollegiate, the freshman from Corona, Calif., has two top-five finishes in just three events.

Myerscough in Malaysia: Senior Laura Myerscough will not compete for the WIldcats again this week after her participation in the World Amateur Golf Championships in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The fifth-year senior will use the time to focus on schoolwork. Myerscough tied for 21st place individually and helped the United States' three woman squad to fifth place in the 39-team tournament. The Stanford-Pepsi Intercollegiate marked the first Arizona tournament Myerscough missed since the Golf World Invitational in November of 2000.

Doing the Solo Thing: With individual victories by Erica Blasberg and Miriam Kraschinski so far this season, 17 Arizona women have won medalist honors in the history of the program. Dating to 1977, those 17 golfers have combined for 59 tournament championships. The 2002-03 season is the 10th time in the last 15 years that at least two Wildcats have each won an individual tournament title.

For Starters: Arizona kicked off its 2002-03 season in style, taking the title at the Fall Preview. The Wildcats received consistent performances from each member of the lineup--helping the team to card three sub-300 rounds. The team only accomplished that feat twice in the 2001-02 season, at the PING/ASU Invitational and in its second-place showing at the NCAA Championships.

Kool Kraschinski: Sophomore Miriam Kraschinski won her first career individual title at the Fall Preview in September, the tournament saw her set a number of career bests. In addition to her career best first place finish, the sophomore from Whitianga, New Zealand shot her best single round score (70 in the second and third rounds of the Preview) and her best three-round tournament score (215). Her subpar performances in the final two rounds of the Preview marked the first time in her career that she has broken par.

On From the AJGA: Freshmen Erica Blasberg and Whitney Welch enter the University of Arizona with impressive junior golf resumes and are expected to have a significant impact on the Wildcat lineup immediately. Both have been named to the American Junior Golf Association's All-America teams on multiple occasions. Welch was named to the AJGA's All-America first-team in 2001 and won honorable mention honors in 2000. Blasberg has been honored as an All-American by the AJGA three consecutive years; winning first-team honors in 2000 and second-team honors in 2001 and 1999.

Arizona Championship Streak: Arizona extended its streak of years in which it has won a team title to eight after it captured the title at the NCAA Fall Preview in September. The last Arizona team to go winless was the 1994-95 squad, which had five top-five finishes. During the eight-season streak, Arizona has produced two national championship teams, five Pac-10 titles, four NCAA West Regional titles and 35 total tournament championships. Included in that stretch was the 1999-2000 team that won eight consecutive events.

Wildcat Coaching Staff: A five-year college coaching veteran, Greg Allen has led the Arizona Wildcats to eight tournament championships in just over two years at the helm of the program. Included in the team's accomplishments under Allen's watch are the 2001 and 2002 Pac-10 Conference Championships, a national runner-up finish and a 20-stroke victory at the 2001 NCAA West Regional. In the summer of 2001, he paired with Arizona men's head coach Rick LaRose to coach the United States team to victory in 2001 U.S.-Japan Collegiate Matches. Allen, hired in July 2000, came to the University of Arizona from Texas where he was the assistant coach for the Longhorns' men's golf team. Allen helped guide Texas to the 1999-2000 NCAA Central Region championship and a fifth-place finish at the NCAA Championships. Prior to coaching at Texas, Allen served as Director of Tournament Operations with the American Junior Golf Association. Allen graduated from Murray State University in 1993. He is assisted by Jody Niemann-Dansie, who was hired in July 2002. Niemann-Dansie played two years on the LPGA after completing her collegiate eligibility. She is a graduate of Arizona State University and was a member of the 1997 and 1998 NCAA National Championship teams in Tempe.

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