Women's Golf Looks to Defend NCAA Title
May 13, 2010
This Week --
Making its 19th consecutive trip, the Arizona State women's golf team looks to defend their NCAA Championship as they head to North Carolina for the 2010 NCAA Women's Golf Championship. The ASU women's golf team will seek its eight NCAA team title at the par 72, 6,368-yard Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C. The tournament will begin Tuesday, May 18 and conclude on Friday, May 21. The Sun Devils will be paired with UCLA and Tennessee the first two rounds. Live results will be available on www.golfstat.com. Live streaming coverage of the 16th, 17th, and 18th holes in the third and fourth rounds will be available on www.NCAA.com.
Eyeing the Competition --
Eight teams and two individuals from non-qualifying teams from each regional have qualified for the NCAA Championships. The Sun Devils will face No. 1/1 UCLA, No. 2/8 Duke, No. 3/5 Auburn, No. 4/3 USC, No. 6/4 Arizona, No. 7/6 Alabama, No. 8/7 Purdue, No. 11/13 Stanford, No. 12/12 Tennessee, No. 13/11 Virgina, No. 14/9 Pepperdine, No. 16/18 Vanderbilt, No. 17/20 New Mexico, No. 18/25 TCU, No. 23/22 Florida State, No. 24/23 Texas A&M, No. 25/28 Oklahoma State, No. 27/26 South Carolina, No. 28/32 Oregon, No. 29/30 Texas, No. 30/27 Tulane, No. 35/34 Kent State and No. 36/39 San Jose State. Rosalyn Kim from Texas Tech, Nina Muehl from East Tennessee State, Marta Silva Zamora from Georgia, Kimberly Kim from Denver, Megan McChrystal from LSU and Ellen Mueller will be competing as individuals.
National Leaders --
With wins in 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998 and 2009, ASU has claimed seven NCAA Championships, the most out of any team. Duke is the next closest at five while San Jose State has claimed three. The Sun Devils also have more Individual NCAA Championships than any school with five. Arizona, USC and Duke each trail ASU with three while three teams have two and eight teams have had one. The last Sun Devil to win an NCAA Individual title was Azahara Munoz in 2008.
After qualifying for this year's NCAA Championship, the Sun Devils are currently tied with Stanford for the number of consecutive trips to NCAAs. ASU finished second at the Central Regional to qualify for their 19th straight NCAA Championship. Stanford's reign of 19 ended two seasons ago when they failed to qualify.
Congrats Graduate! --
Juliana Murcia has become the ASU women's golf team's latest graduate. A standout both in the classroom and on the course, Murcia will graduate with a 3.8 grade point average in Art with an emphasis in Sculpture. She is a two-time All-Academic Pac-10 First-Team member and three-time NGCA All-American Scholar. On the course, she was named a Second-Team All-American last year and has been an All-Pac-10 selection three times in her career. This season, Murcia has finished in the top three in four tournaments and has just finished out of the top 20 once this season.
Sophomore Carlota Ciganda made history at the Pac-10 Championships as she became the first back-to-back conference champion. Last season, Ciganda defeated senior Jennifer Osborn and USC's Jennifer Song in a playoff to earn her first collegiate victory. This year, the Spaniard birdied on a playoff hole against senior Juliana Murcia for her first medalist honor of the season. She is only the second player in the conference to win two Pac-10 titles. Former ASU standout Wendy Ward was the Pac-10 medalist in 1993 and 1995. Ciganda is the first Sun Devil to successfully defend a tournament title since Heather Bowie who won the Conquistadores/Chris Johnson Invitational in 1994 and 1995.
Four Sun Devils were named to the All-Pac-10 team last week. Ciganda and Murcia were both named to the First Team for the second consecutive season. Johnson joined Ciganda and Murcia on the First-Team as the only freshman on the list. Sweeney earned Second-Team honors after being named Honorable Mention last season.
Top Talent --
With three players in the top 15 in the Golfstat Cup standings and four in the top 25 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Ratings, the Sun Devils have one of the most talented squads in the country. Murcia leads the team with a ranking of sixth by Golfweek and 10th by Golfstat. Ciganda is ninth in both ranking systems. Johnson currently sits at eighth in the Golfweek rankings and is 11th by Golf Stat. Sweeney is 21st in the Golfweek poll.
Curtis Cup Bound --
Freshman Johnson received an invitation to represent the United States in the 2010 Curtis Cup. Held June 11-13 at the Essex Country Club in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass., the Curtis Cup selects eight of the top American amateur women's golf to compete against eight amateurs from Great Britain and Ireland. This is the 21st time a Sun Devil has been selected as a member of the Curtis Cup and first since Kellee Booth in 1998.