No. 4 USC Set For NCAA Championships

May 21, 2007

The No. 4 USC women's golf team, the 2003 NCAA champion and the 2006 runner-up, continues its quest for a second team title as it prepares to play in the 2007 NCAA Women's Golf Championships, Tuesday through Friday (May 22-25), at the LPGA International Legends Course in Daytona Beach, Fla., hosted by the University of Central Florida and the Central Florida Sports Commission.

USC is coming off its second consecutive NCAA Central Regional title, this year posting an 11-shot win to advance to its 10th straight NCAA Championship final, all under 11th-year head coach Andrea Gaston.

Play begins each day on the par 72, 6,351-yard course at 8 a.m. EDT. USC is paired with No. 8 Stanford and No. 2 Duke for the first two rounds. The three schools begin play off the 1st hole on Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. EDT and tee off the 10th hole on Wednesday at 8 a.m. EDT.

Within the threesome are winners of three of the past four NCAA team champions. Duke is the two-time defending team champs from 2005 and 2006 while USC won it in 2003. Tee times and pairings for the third and fourth rounds will be determined after the first two rounds.

Of the 24 teams that advanced through regional play, 21 are ranked in the latest Top 25 and all are in the top 40.

USC won its only NCAA Women's Golf championship in 2003 at Purdue, 15 strokes better than second-place Pepperdine. USC won the second of its three NCAA individual titles that year when Mikaela Parmlid won a one-hole playoff for the victory. Jennifer Rosales won USC's first individual title in 1998 and current junior Dewi Claire Schreefel won USC's third in 2006. USC's three individual title winners ties it for third most in NCAA history with Duke. Arizona and Arizona State both boast four.

This is USC's 20th overall NCAA Championship final appearance and 10th in a row. The Trojans's second place finish in 2006 tied its second best NCAA effort, matching their 1994 result. USC also finished third in 1986, fourth in 1987 and 2000 and fifth in 1993.

In addition to its three individual champions, USC players have posted six other top five finishes. Irene Cho (2003), Candie Kung (2001) and Dana Arnold (1990) all tied for third, Jill McGill (1994) finished fourth, Rosales tied for fourth (1999) and Leila Chartrand (2000) tied for fifth.

USC IN 2007
USC has finished among the top 5 in seven of 10 events this year and tied for sixth in another. It opened the season with a win at the Topy Cup in Japan and most recently won the 2007 NCAA Championships Central Regional.

USC has had to make due without 2006 Honda Award winner and three-time All-American Irene Cho, who graduated last year after tying a school record during the 2005-06 season with four individual titles.

Troy returned seniors Catalina Marina and Veronica Felibert as well as juniors Paola Moreno and Dewi Claire Schreefel. The team got a boost in January when freshman Belen Mozo arrived. One of the top amateurs in Europe in 2006, her arrival has solidified USC's lineup. When all of the aforementioned players have played together, USC has finished in the top 3 of four of five tournaments with one win and one second place finish.

Paola Moreno
USC is led by junior Paola Moreno, who is ranked No. 10 in the country by She boasts a team-best 73.40 stroke average and has finished among the top 17 in nine of 10 tournaments this year, including four in the top 7 and three other times in the top 11.

Moreno won her first individual title at the Texas 'Mo'Morial. She was seventh at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational and tied for seventh at both the Daytona Beach Fall Preview and the 2007 Pac-10 Championships.

Moreno fired a USC record-low 66 in the second round of the NCAA Championships Central Regional en route to a second-place individual. The 66 tied her for the fourth-lowest round in USC history and her three-day 212 tied for the sixth-lowest 54-hole score. Moreno's previous low on the season was a 69 in the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown.

Dewi Claire Schreefel
Junior two-time All-American and 2006 defending NCAA individual champion Dewi Claire Schreefel, ranked No. 37, was also USC's highest finisher at the 2005 NCAA Championships when she tied for 10th. This season, her best finish was at the Arizona Wildcat Invitational, a tie for second.

At the 2007 NCAA Championships West Regional, she took 14th, which included an opening round effort of 69, a season best. At the Pac-10 Championships, she tied for seventh with teammate Paola Moreno. Her stroke average of 75.04 is third best on the team and she has five top 20 finishes.

In late March, Schreefel played as an amateur in the 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship on the LPGA Tour at the Mission Hills C.C. in Rancho Mirage, Calif. She posted a 155 (79-76, +11) but didn't make the cut.

Belen Mozo
Spring semester transfer freshman Belen Mozo made her debut at the Northrop Grumman Regional Challenge in February and led the team with a tie for eighth place, firing a three-day 221. She has finished in the top 20 in her five of six spring starts and tied for 30th in the other (at the 2007 Pac-10 Championships).

Mozo, second on the team with a 74.83 stroke average and ranked No. 26 by, posted a season-best tie for third at the NCAA Championships Central Regional. Her opening round 68 tied her for 16th on USC's single round list and her 213 tied her for ninth on the 54-hole chart.

Mozo is coming off a highly successful 2006 amateur season. She won the 2006 Girls' British Open Amateur Championship and the British Ladies Open Amateur Championships, making her the first woman to win both titles in the same year since 1972. She also won the International European Ladies Amateur Championship.

Catalina Marin
Senior Catalina Marin, ranked No. 82, has a stroke average of 76.00, fourth best on the squad. She has a pair of top 10 finishes, at the Topy Cup and the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational, and four other top 30 finishes. She has posted a season-low round of 73 five times.

Veronica Felibert
Senior Veronica Felibert has a stroke average of 77.30. She won USC's first tourney of the season, the Topy Cup in Japan, with a three-round 217. Her other top 20 finish came when she was among three Trojans who tied for 17th at the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown. She has carded a season-low round of 70 twice.

Felibert tied for 33rd at last year's NCAA Championships.

Trojans at the World Amateur Team Championships
Veronica Felibert (Venezuela), Dewi Claire Schreefel (The Netherlands) and Belen Mozo (Spain) all represented their respective countries at the 2006 World Amateur Team Championships in Stellenbosch, South Africa, October 18-21.

Schreefel tied for 24th in the125-woman field, carding a four-round 291 (+3) that included a second-round 3-under 69. The Netherlands tied for 11th overall in the 42-country field.

Mozo tied for 29th with a 293 (+5). Spain finished eighth and Mozo's best round was a 1-under 71 on the first day.

Felibert tied for 55th with a 301 (+13), her best effort a par-72 on the second day. Venezuela finished tied for 30th.

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