Buffs Finish Seventh At 2021 Pac-12 Golf Championship
STANFORD, Calif. – The Buffaloes saved their best round for last, firing a 287 on the last day of competition at the 2021 Pac-12 Women's Golf Championship on Sunday to take seventh overall.
Southern California never let go of the team lead after the first day and won the conference crown by five strokes. The Trojans, ranked 10th by Golfstat, recorded a 5-under 279 to finish with an 849. No. 26 Stanford moved back up to second (854) and No. 7 Arizona State placed third (860). Arizona, ranked 22nd, finished one stroke behind the Sun Devils (861) and No. 27 UCLA and No. 12 Oregon tied for fifth (875).
Colorado improved in each round of the championship and each day the team started on the 10th tee. CU shot a 302 on Friday and came back on Saturday with a 298. But Sunday's round of 287, which was 3-over on the 6,269-yard, par 71 Stanford Golf Course, was the best round the Buffs have recorded since the second round of the Branch Law/Dick McGuire Invite on Sept. 11, 2018, when CU recorded a 285. (That tournament was played on a par 72 course.)
The Buffs recorded an 887 for the championship, finishing ahead of Oregon State (896), Washington (897) and California (910).
Sophomore Ellie Gower led CU, tying for 13th to earn the first top-15 finish of her collegiate career. She closed out the championship with a 2-over 73 after carding a 70 and 76, respectively, in the first two rounds to finish with a 219. She recorded a team-best 10 birdies at the event, and five came in the third round. She also made par seven times and had five bogeys and one of CU's two double-bogeys on Sunday.
Junior Malak Bouraeda and senior Kirsty Hodgkins tied for 27th as both finished with a 225. Bouraeda came back from 13-over after the first day to shoot even in the second round. Like her team, she saved her best round for last, recording the 13th sub-par round of her career with a 70. Bouraeda played a very consistent round with three birdies and made six pars on the back nine to start 3-under.
As she went to the front nine to start her final second nine, she made three straight pars before sinking her fourth birdie of the day. After another par on No. 5, she recorded a bogey on No. 6 but bounced back with another par. Unfortunately, she had a bit of trouble on No. 8 and recorded CU's other double-bogey before finishing the round with another par for 2-over on the front.
Hodgkins ended her CU career with a 73 to go with her previous rounds of 74 and 78. She led the Buffs with six birdies on Sunday, and made par seven times.
Not to be outdone, freshman Hailey Schalk turned in her finest round of the tournament, firing an even 71. All four of her bogeys were wiped out with four birdies and she made par on the other 10 holes. She ended up 35th, finishing with a 227.
Junior Alisha Lau ended up tied for 38th, carding a 229 for the championship. She recorded her second straight 76 on Sunday with two birdies and made nine pars.
"Our team fought really hard today and showed signs of what we have been capable of all semester," head coach Anne Kelly said. "We had 21 birdies today which is a huge improvement over the first few days. Kirsty started well then had a disaster hole, but as she has done for five years, she just kept fighting and found a way to shoot a good score. The finishing holes were very tough because of wind and hole locations.
"I'm really proud of how our team improved over the semester and the perseverance they showed. To compete with the very best, it takes time, hard work and dedication. This team, with the exception of Kirsty who is graduating, is young and very determined to compete at a high level."
Stanford's Rachel Heck moved up from second to first to claim medalist honors and finished 7-under. She was 5-under entering the final round (68-69) and fired a 69 in the last 18-holes to finish with a 206. She ended with a two-stroke advantage over USC's Amelia Garvey, who turned in a 208 on her scorecard (67-72-69).
ALL-PAC-12 TEAMS ANNOUNCED: The Pac-12 announced the All-Pac-12 Teams following the conclusion of the championship. Junior Malak Bouraeda was named to the honorable mention team. This is her first post-season conference honor. She is the sixth Buff to be named to the All-Pac-12 honorable mention team and the 10th Buff overall to earn All-Pac-12 honors.
|TOP 5 INDIVIDUALS|
|1.||Rachel Heck, Stanford||68-69-69—206|
|2.||Amelia Garvey, USC||67-72-69—208|
|T3.||Malia Nam, USC||68-72-69—209|
|T3.||YuSang Hou, Arizona||71-68-70—209|
|T5.||Linn Grant, Arizona State||73-69-68—210|
|T5.||Briana Chacon, Oregon||71-71-68—210|
|9.||Oregon State||305-303-288— 896|
Note: Washington State did not send a full team, only individuals, and Utah does not have a women's golf team which is why there are only 10 teams listed in the team scores.