Pac-12 Women's Golf Championship Preview
TEMPE, Ariz. – Sun Devil Women's Golf will compete at the 2021 Pac-12 Women's Golf Championships, starting Friday and running through Sunday at Stanford Golf Course.
With the 2020 event getting canceled, this is the first Pac-12 Championship in two years. By virtue of their No. 7 ranking by Golfstat, Arizona State has qualified as the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament. The Maroon & Gold will be looking for their Pac-10/12 record 14th Individual Championship and ninth Team Championship, as the Sun Devil Women's Golf program has had more success than any other team at this event.
"We are excited to have the opportunity to compete for a Conference championship this year," Head Coach Missy Farr-Kaye exclaimed. "This is a great time of year as we head into the postseason and display our talents on the golf course. The Pac-12 is one of the strongest conferences in the country and we will be ready to go!"
The Pac-12 Conference is consistently considered among the top conferences in the country, with this year being no different. The Pac-12 features five teams in the GolfWeek Top 25 and seven teams in the Golfstat Top 30. 13 of the Top-100 Individuals in Golfstat's rankings will be in Stanford, including Arizona State's-own Linn Grant, Alessandra Fanali, and Ashley Menne.
Highlights from the first three rounds of the Women's Golf Championships will be available the evening after rounds complete on Pac-12 Networks, Pac-12 Now app, Pac-12.com and Pac-12 social media platforms. The Pac-12 Women's Golf Championship Show will air on Pac-12 Network on Monday, April 26, at 8 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. MT to highlight the final round as well as memorable moments from throughout the championship event.
Arizona State will be joined by Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon, Oregon State, Stanford, UCLA, USC, Washington, and Washington State. Arizona State is the top-ranked team according to Golfstat and is joined by No. 10 USC, No. 12 Oregon, and No. 22 Arizona in the Top-25. Washington State will only be scoring three individuals, meaning they will not count in the team standings.
The 53-golfer field is littered with talented, including 13 of the Top-100 collegiate golfers according to Golfstat. USC's Allisen Corpuz leads the way at No. 4, with Arizona State's Linn Grant right behind her at No. 5. No. 21 Rachel Heck of Stanford and No. 23 Emma Spitz of UCLA are also in the Top-25, all of whom Grant has defeated in every head-to-head matchup. Track your favorite Sun Devil with live scoring provided at the following link.
Coach Farr-Kaye has a difficult task of choosing her lineup every week, having to decide between a roster full of talented golfers. Linn Grant will occupy the No. 1 overall spot as she has all season, enjoying a breakout sophomore campaign that has her as one of the finalist for the ANNIKA Award. Alessandra Fanali is in the midst of another strong campaign and will fill in at the No. 2 spot. Freshman Ashley Menne is the No. 3 golfer and no stranger to the tournament setting, having won three-straight Arizona Individual State Championships. Alexandra Forsterling competes in her second Pac-12 Championship in the No. 4 slot. Rounding out the lineup and making her Pac-12 Championship debut is Amanda Linner as the No. 5. All five Sun Devils will tee-off on the first hole, beginning their rounds every ten minutes following the initial 9:20 tee-time. Here is how Coach Farr-Kaye's team will lineup:
10:00 AM – Linn Grant (HOLE 1)
9:50 AM – Alessandra Fanali (HOLE 1)
9:40 AM – Ashley Menne (HOLE 1)
9:30 AM – Alexandra Forsterling (HOLE 1)
9:20 AM – Amanda Linner (HOLE 1)
Stanford Golf Course will be the host of the 2021 Pac-12 Women's Golf Championships. It is located in the foothills above the Stanford University campus and is home to the Stanford Men's and Women's Golf teams. The last time Arizona State competed at this course, they won the team title at the Stanford Intercollegiate. The Sun Devils finished ten-under (842) to win by five strokes over host Stanford. Linn Grant finished in third place in only her second collegiate event. The course will be set as a 6,269-yard, par 71. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, attendance is limited to those on a player pass list and complying with California State Guidelines.
HISTORY AT THE PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIP
No team has enjoyed more success at the Pac-10/12 Women's Golf Championships than Arizona State. Their 13 individual champions are six more than any other team, while their eight team championships are tied for first. Most recently, Olivia Mehaffey claimed the 2019 Individual Championship and is the reigning Pac-12 Champion. The Sun Devils last one as a team back in 2009 on their way to the program's seventh of eight NCAA Championships, with Coach Farr-Kaye serving as an Assistant Coach that year.
Legendary Sun Devil Women's Golf Head Coach Linda Vollstedt could be considered the queen of the Pac-10/12 Championships. Her teams won it a total of six times, including the first two in 1987 & 1988. Later in her career, Arizona State ran off four straight titles during their dominant run in the mid-90s, a feat that has never been matched since. ASU has two Top-3 finishes at the conference championships under Coach Farr-Kaye, finishing third in 2016 & 2019.
LAST TIME OUT
Sun Devil Women's Golf last competed at the Silverado Showdown in early April.
Arizona State (+22/886) finished tied for fourth in a field with seven of Golfstat's Top-50 teams in their latest rankings. Alessandra Fanali (6th) and Alexandra Forsterling (T-8th) both earned Top-10 finishes, leading the way in the absence of Linn Grant and Olivia Mehaffey.
"We had a solid finish today," Coach Farr-Kaye remarked. "The weather was cool and cloudy, so the ball wasn't traveling as far. Overall, we had two Top-10 finishes for our two juniors Alessandra and Alexandra, which is great."
The Sun Devils had led the field in pars all weekend and that continued today, as they finished with 171, eight more than any other team. They added 31 birdies and boasted the fourth-best scoring averages on par four and par five holes.
For Alessandra Fanali, it is her second Top-10 finish of the season and fifth of her career. She was her team's lowest scorer for the third time in her career. Fanali was the Sun Devils' best on par four and par five opportunities.
Forsterling now has three Top-10 finishes in addition to her co-championship at the 2021 Match in the Desert. She paced the team with 11 birdies and an even finish on par three holes over the course of the week.
HOW TO FOLLOW
Highlights from the first three rounds of the Women's Golf Championships will be available the evening after rounds complete on Pac-12 Networks, Pac-12 Now app, Pac-12.com and Pac-12 social media platforms.
The Pac-12 Women's Golf Championship Show will air on Pac-12 Network on Monday, April 26, at 8 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. MT to highlight the final round as well as memorable moments from throughout the championship event.
For the latest updates and information on the Sun Devil Women's Golf program, follow our Twitter/Instagram accounts (@SunDevilWGolf), like our Facebook page (facebook.com/sundevilwgolf/), and visit our website (thesundevils.com). Track your favorite Sun Devil with live scoring provided at the following link.
- One of the most decorated golfer's in the nation, ranked as the No. 2 individual in Golf Channel's Preseason Spring Power Rankings.
- Currently the No. 2-ranked female amateur in the World, reaching the highest WAGR of her career.
- Named to the Preseason ANNIKA Award Watch List as one of the candidates for National Player of the Year back in September.
- Managed to remain in the Top-10 of the Golfstat Individual Rankings all of last season, eventually settling at No. 8 in the final edition.
- One of 11 recognized by the WGCA as a First Team All-American in 2020
- Golfweek tabbed her as a Second Team All-American.
- Earned a spot on the ANNIKA Award Spring Watch List as one of 15 finalists for National Player of the Year.
- Finished in the Top-10 at five of her seven tournaments and carded a team-high 12 rounds under par.
- Took home Individual Medalist honors while leading her team to a victory at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, the only Sun Devil to pick up an individual win in 2020
- The highest finishing Sun Devil at the IJGA Collegiate Invitational in Guadalajara, putting together one of three Top-10 finishes (T-6th).
- Played brilliantly at the Stanford Intercollegiate (-6/207), placing third individually amongst one of the strongest fields in the country. A big reason why Arizona State captured their most significant Team Championship of the season, beating out six other Top-25 teams.
- Carded back-to-back 69's (-2) at the U.S. Women's Open, making the cut at the LPGA Major Championship. Ended the tournament with a 291 (+7), finishing in the Top-25 among the best golfers in the World in a tie for 23rd. Among the 24 amateurs in the field, she finished with the fourth-best total, one of only six amateurs to make the cut.
- Helped Sweden win their third-consecutive European Team Championship and also finished in sixth at the European Amateur Championships.
- Palmer Cup champion and two-time Augusta National Women's Amateur invitee.
- Emerged as a reliable and consistent piece of the Sun Devil lineup, helping Arizona State finish at No. 3 in the final national polls last season.
- Tabbed by Golfweek as a Third-Team All-American.
- Recognized as a WGCA Honorable Mention All-American.
- Five Top-20 finishes, highlighted by her second career Top-10.
- Played her best golf at the end of the season, earning a tie for sixth place at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, the final tournament of 2020.
- Individual Champion of the Duel in the Desert (-4/68), helping lead the Sun Devils to victory over Denver and No. 16 UCLA while beating out 20 other golfers for the top spot.
- Recorded her first collegiate hole-in-one on the par-three 15th hole at the Royal Golf Club (Lake Elmo, MN) in the first round of the ANNIKA Intercollegiate.
- Back-to-back Top-15 finishes to start the season, a sign of the breakout sophomore season that was to come.
- Earned a 10th place finish at the Windy City Collegiate, moving-up 13 spots on the final day thanks to a 69 (-3).
- Two rounds in the 60s, including a team-best 68 (-4) in the first round of the ANNIKA Intercollegiate.
- 2020 WGCA All-American Scholar
- Finished in the Top-15 at the 2020 European Amateur (13th) at the European Amateur Championships this offseason. Also represented Italy at the European Team Championships, helping them finish 2-1 in match play and in fifth place.
- One of the Sun Devils' most experienced golfers, having played in 33 tournaments during her career including two NCAA Championships.
- Six career Top-10 finishes on her resume, with three coming last season.
- Proved why she has been a mainstay in the Sun Devil lineup over the past three years, putting together an excellent junior year last season.
- Recorded three Top-10 finishes, highlighted by a fifth-place effort (-3/210) at the Stanford Intercollegiate, helping the Sun Devils claim their first Team Championship of the season.
- Played some of her best golf towards the end of the season, earning fifth place at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, leading Arizona State to their second Team Title.
- Highest finishing Sun Devil at the Pac-12 Preview (-5/214), placing sixth.
- Finished in the Top-10 while helping Arizona State defeat Denver and No. 16 UCLA at the Duel in the Desert
- Carded three rounds in the 60s, while ending five of her rounds under par.
- 2020 WGCA All-American Scholar
- Competed at the U.S. Women's Amateur, earning the 18th overall seed after stroke play in a field of 132 golfers.
- Rising junior that has been a mainstay in the Sun Devil lineup over the past two season, competing in 17 of 19 events in her career.
- Eight Top-20 finishes to her name, including three Top-10's.
- Showed promise during a sophomore season in which she played in six of eight events
- Finished in a tie for eight at the Duel in the Desert, helping lead the Sun Devils to victory over Denver and No. 16 UCLA.
- Earned back-to-back Top-20 finishes to start her season.
- Posted her second-highest career finish, tying for 11th at the ANNIKA Intercollegiate.
- Shot her fifth-career round in the 60s during the second day of the ANNIKA Intercollegiate.
- Consistent performer at the Windy City Collegiate, helping the Sun Devils finish five-under as a team.
- Ended under par at two tournaments in 2020 after not doing so in 2019.
- 2020 WGCA All-American Scholar.
- Represented Germany at the 2020 European Team Championships, helping them make a run to the match play finals for the first time since 2009. Went head-to-head with teammate Linn Grant and Sweden in the European Team Championship, finishing the event 2-1 in match play.
- Mid-year addition to the last year's Arizona State roster, arriving prior in the 2020 Spring semester from Sweden.
- Made an immediate impact in the Maroon & Gold, quickly earning a spot in the lineup.
- Displayed flashes of brilliance during an abbreviated freshman campaign.
- Competed in three tournaments and four events total, accumulating valuable experience as she looks forward to her second season in Tempe.
- Made her Sun Devil debut at the Duel in the Desert in January, helping Arizona State defeat Denver and No. 16 UCLA to capture the event title.
- Showed her development by earning a career-best finish (T-28th) at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, the final tournament of the season. Arizona State captured their second Team Championship at this event, the first with Linner in the lineup
- Participated in the inaugural Augusta National Women's Amateur back in 2019, one of five Sun Devils to play in the prestigious event
- Played in the 2018 AJGA's Thunderbird International Junior Championship at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, the sight of the 2021-23 NCAA Championships.
- One of two incoming highly-touted local recruits ready to make their Sun Devil Women's Golf debut in 2021.
- Earned five wins in six Arizona Golf Association events during her offseason.
- 2020 Women's State Amateur Stroke Play Champion, winning the title at Grayhawk Golf Club, the home of the 2021-23 NCAA Championships.
- Three-time AIA Division I Individual State Champion and one of two signees out of local high school Xavier Prep.
- Took home the 2018 state title by going four-under at Tucson National Golf Course.
- Captured the 2017 individual state championship thanks to a three-under performance.
- Shared medalist honors in a rain-shortened 2016 AIA championship event her freshman season.
- In all three seasons (2016-18), she would lead the Gators to the AIA Division I Team State Championship in dominating fashion.
- During her junior season in 2018, Xavier won the title by an incredible 33-strokes.
- One of a select few female Arizona High School golfers that won three Division I individual state titles.
- Received the Arizona High School Girls Golfer of the Year Award at the AZ Central Sports Awards each of the four years she was a Gator (2016-19).
- In addition to her success at the prep level, she has also earned hardware at some of the top competitive junior events.
- Set a record by collecting four consecutive Junior Golf Association of Arizona individual titles. As a result, she is a four-time winner of the JGAA Player of the Year Award (2016-19).
- Three-time Jox Sports Arizona Junior Golfer of the Year (2018-20).
- Earned 43 total victories at JGAA events in her four years prior to arriving in Tempe
- Has ranked as high as 114th in the Women's Amateur Golf Rankings.
- Talented local standout who is one of two freshman phenoms out of local high school Xavier Prep.
- Stayed busy this offseason competing in several local tournaments, including earning a victory at the Arizona Golf Association Women's Scotch Play Championship.
- Knocked off the top-seeded golfer to reach the 2020 AGA State Amateur Match Play semi-finals.
- Played an integral role in the Gators winning two AIA Division I State Championship in 2017 & 2018.
- Finished in the Individual Top-15 at her final three State Championship events, highlighted by a third-place finish (+1/145) in 2018.
- Teamed up with future Sun Devil teammate Ashley Menne to help Xavier win the 2018 title by an astounding 33 strokes.
- Team's second-highest finisher at the 2019 State Championship, earning 14th place in a field of 73 golfers.
- One of three Gators to finish in the Top-15 at the 2017 tournament, which Xavier won by nine strokes.
- AZ Central tabbed her as a finalist for the Arizona High School Girls Golfer of the Year in 2018.
- Comes to Tempe with extensive experience in national and local tournaments, having competed in AJGA and JGAA events throughout her career.
- At the 2020 U.S. Women's Amateur Four-Ball Qualifier in Mission Hills, Kansas, she teamed up with her partner to finish with the lowest score (68) of anyone at the regional.
- Has compiled eight top-three finishes at JGAA events, including four victories.
- Won the 2019 Thunderbird Invitational-PING Jr Masters at her future collegiate home, Papago Golf Course.
- She also has titles at the 2018 Northern AZ Jr Championship, 2017 AM&E Classic - Bryce Molder Jr Masters, and the 2017 Holiday Challenge.
- Finished second to Ashley Menne at the 2018 FCWT Junior Golf Tournament at Grayhawk Golf Club, home of the 2021-23 NCAA Championships.