Cowgirls, Neisen win Big 12 crowns, Sooners fifth

SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Kenzie Neisen and the Oklahoma State women’s golf team rewrote the record books and won the 2016 Big 12 Conference individual and team championships on Sunday at the Dominion Country Club.
 
The victory gives the Cowgirls 23 conference titles in program history. The nine Big 12 championships are more than twice as many as any other school, and more than all other current Big 12 programs combined.
 
Neisen, who won the 2015 conference title as a freshman, joined fellow Cowgirl Annie Thurman-Young (2004 and 2005) as the only back-to-back Big 12 individual champions in league history. Neisen closed out the weekend with a 6-under 66, which is tied for the best round in Big 12 Championship history. The sophomore’s 9-under 207 for the weekend broke the previous Big 12 Championship record by a stroke.
 
As a team, OSU was 11 strokes better than second-place Texas. The Cowgirls closed out at 8-under 856, which broke the record for the lowest 54-hole score in Big 12 Championship history by five strokes. The Cowgirls shot 282 on Sunday, which tied for the second-best round at a Big 12 Championship.
 
The Cowgirls have now won their last four events on the year and will turn their attention to the NCAA Regional tournament, which will be played on May 5-7 at one of four sites. The regional fields will be announced live on the Golf Channel at 5 p.m. Central on Monday, April 25.
 
Emma Broze and Linnea Johansson joined Neisen on the All-Tournament team. Broze carded seven birdies on the final 12 holes on Sunday to finish tied for fifth with a 1-under 215. She jumped 11 spots on the leaderboard in the process, which was the largest jump among the top 20 finishers.
 
Johansson went 72-71-73 on the weekend to finish tied for ninth at even par. This marks two straight seasons with top-10 finishes at the Big 12 Championships for Johansson.
 
Chih-Min Chen and Maddie McCrary also turned in solid performances for the Cowgirls. Chen carded rounds of 74-71-74 to finish 3-over and in 16th place. McCrary finished in a tie for 24th at seven-over par after scoring 74-74-75.

The University of Oklahoma fired a season-best 285 (-3) in the third round to finish in fifth place. The Sooners logged a three-round 12-over 876.

Ana Ruiz posted a career-best 3-under 213 to finish the conference tournament in a tie for second place out of 45 competitors. The sophomore pocketed two birdies en route to a bogey-free 2-under 70 in Sunday’s final round.

“Ana played fantastic all week,” OU head coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell said. “She’s been working really hard and to see it pay off at the conference championship just goes to show that hard work really does pay off.”

Sophomore Hannah Wood rebounded from a first-round 77 with 70s in both the second and third rounds to finish tied for 12th place at 217. Wood tallied four birdies on the day including one on her final hole for the 2-under-par performance.

Classmate Valerie Tanguay also fired a tournament-best 70 on Sunday for a three-round 222. Tanguay registered five birdies in the final round and finished tied for 21st place.

“I’m also really proud of Val (Tanguay) and Hannah (Wood) for setting the tone in the final round,” Drouin-Luttrell said. “It was fun to see them get off to a great start and keep that momentum rolling.”

Sophomore Rylee Pedigo shot a 74 in the third round to finish in a share of 30th at 224  and freshman Julienne Soo shot a 229 for 42nd place.

“I’m really proud of these girls. We challenge each other and played well," Drouin-Luttrell said. "The girls carried themselves very well the entire week. We stayed patient, had confidence in our ability and the results followed.”

The Sooners will learn of their postseason fate on Monday, April 25. The NCAA Division 1 Women’s Golf Championships selections will be announced live via the Golf Channel at 5 p.m. CT.
 
Team Leaderboard
1. Oklahoma State (-8) 288-286-282 – 856

2. Texas (+3) 288-291-288 – 867
3. TCU (+9) 294-289-290 – 873
4. Iowa State (+10) 287-291-296 – 874
5. Oklahoma (+12) 302-289-285 – 876
6. Baylor (+21) 298-297-290-885
7. Kansas (+23) 297-301-289 – 887
8. Kansas State (+24) 295-294-299- 888
9. Texas Tech (+25) 296-295-298 – 889
 
Individual Leaderboard
1. Kenzie Neisen, Oklahoma State (-9) 71-70-66 – 207
T2. Ana Ruiz, Oklahoma (-3) 73-70-70 – 213

T2. Sophia Schubert, Texas (-3) 70-72-71 – 213
4. Madison Talley, Kansas State (-2) 69-74-71 – 214
T5. Emma Broze, Oklahoma State (-1) 71-75-69 – 215
T5. Sabina Pena, TCU (-1) 73-67-75 – 215
T5. Yupaporn Kawinpakorn, Kansas (-1) 72-73-70 – 215
T5. Julia Beck, Texas (-1) 73-72-70 – 215
 
Oklahoma State
1. Kenzie Neisen, Oklahoma State (-9) 71-70-66 – 207
T5. Emma Broze, Oklahoma State (-1) 71-75-69 – 215
T9. Linnea Johansson, Oklahoma State (E) 72-71-73 – 216
16. Chih-Min Chen, Oklahoma State (+3) 74-71-74 – 219
T24. Maddie McCrary, Oklahoma State (+7) 74-74-75 – 223
 
 

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