Women's Golf Heads to the Sunshine State

Feb. 26, 2003

What's Happening This Week: The Washington State women's golf team travels to Lakeland, Fla. to compete at the 2003 Florida Southern Invitational Friday Feb. 28 through Sunday, Mar. 2...The tournament is a 54-hole tournament with a shotgun start each day at 8:30 a.m....Florida Southern has the last five individual women's NCAA Div. II Champions...This will be the first appearance for the Cougars at the FSU Invite...

Field: The 20-team field will consist of Florida Atlantic, Florida International, James Madison, Northern Iowa, Illinois State, Stetson, Eastern Kentucky, Bradley and Washington State from NCAA Division I. Representing NCAA Division II is Florida Southern, Lynn, Barry, Nebraska-Omaha, Tusculum, Northeastern, Lenior-Rhyne, Catawba, and Northern Kentucky. Joining the divisional teams is Daytona Beach Community College.

Head Coach Walt Williams On The Florida Southern: 'I expect us to be seeded third or fourth behind defending NCAA Division II Champion Florida Southern, 72nd ranked (Golfstat) James Madison, and Illinois State, who were ranked ahead of us last week at 91st (Golfstat). We travel to Florida with the goal of another championship, and I will be disappointed if we don't win.'

Last Week At The Inland Collegiate: The women's team championed the 2003 Inland Collegiate at Lewiston Golf Course at Lewiston, Idaho Feb. 21. The women saw superb efforts from a freshman starting only her third collegiate event, and a newcomer to not just the team, but to the United States. Freshman Ashleigh Gilhuly and Russian transfer Maria Kostina finished in a tie for second place with identical 4-over 76's. Stephanie Parsley and Kim Welch were just one shot back of their fellow Cougs and finished at a tie for fourth at 5-over. Katharine Dorris and Heather O'Leary finished with 6-over 78's, and were followed by Jay-Lee Longbottom's 81, Lindsey Bogden's 82, Donna Bell's 84, and Nicole Hebner's 87.

Marking the Scorecard: WSU moved up three spots and now ranks 89th as a team according to the Golfweek/Sagarin performance index ...the Cougars are moved up two spots from last week, and now are ranked 84th in the Div. I head-to-head rankings on Golfstat.com...Kim Welch ranks 128th in the Golfweek/Sagarin individual performance index...Jay-Lee Longbottom is ranked third in the nation with a 92.3 percent rate of fairways hit according to Golfstat.com.

Sq-Welch-ing The Competition: In the first four tournaments of the fall, Welch finished in second (Lady Vandal), third (Ram Fall Classic), fifth (Heather Farr Memorial) and 20th (Shanico Invitational)...Welch now sits just three Top 10 finishes away from tying first place Tasha Browner's 12...Welch has lowered her scoring average by nearly two full strokes (76.1 to 74.2) from last season...Welch is ranked 64th toward the Women's Golfstat Cup, an award given to the best female golf performers by golfstat.com.

From Russia With Love: In her first event as a Cougar, Kostina finished in a tie for second with fellow Cougar Ashleigh Gilhuly with a 4-over 76...Kostina comes to the Cougars after having been one of the most successful Russian golfers over the last few years...Kostina was recognized by Golf Digest Magazine as 'The Best Russian Golfer' in 1999, 2001, and 2002.

Be A Cougar Caddie: Follow Cougar Results at the 2003 Florida Southern Invitational by logging on to wsucougars.com.

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