CORAL GABLES, Fla. – In just her second collegiate tournament, Oklahoma State’s Maja Stark was named co-champion at the Hurricane Invitational where she carded a 1-under par 67-75-73 – 215.
Stark’s victory is the second individual title the Cowgirls have won this season, joining fellow freshman Isabella Fierro who won the Betsy Rawls Invitational in October. The freshman duo is the first pair of freshman to win individual events in Cowgirl golf history. It is also the first time since the 2011-2012 season that the Cowgirls have brought home an individual championship from two different events.
Oklahoma State shot a 299 on the day, which resulted in a seventh place finish after carding 289-308-299 (+32) – 896 for the tournament. Maryland captured the team championship as the Terrapins turned in a low round of 281 (-7) to finish the tournament at 874 (+10). The Oklahoma Sooners shot a 5-under 283 in the final round to jump from ninth to fifth.
Ranked the No. 12 amateur in the world by WAGR, Stark had high expectations upon her arrival in Stillwater and lived up to them with her performance in this event. The freshman turned in the low score of the tournament with a 67 in the first round, and sat in second place entering the final round. A 73 in the third round was enough to keep her as one of only two players to score under par for the tournament along with Michigan’s Ashley Kim who shared the individual title with Stark.
Han-Hsuan Yu was the closest Cowgirl to Stark at 11-over par, which tied for 27th place. Hailey Jones tied Stark for the best round of the day for the Cowgirls shooting a 73 to finish the tournament tied for 38th place. Isabella Fierro turned in a 76 in the final round and carded 228 for the event. Emma Whitaker and Michelle Forsland posted their best scores of the tournament in the third round with Whitaker finishing tied for 56th place and Forsland tied for 73rd.
The 5-under, 283, in Tuesday’s final round gave OU the second lowest score of the day, trailing only Maryland (-7, 281) who won the event with a total score of 10-over.
“We played so much better today.” head coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell said after the tournament. “We challenged the girls to step up and finish on a strong note. I’m so proud of the way they fought all day because conditions were tough, but we were still able to make a move.”
Mikhaela Fortuna (+2, 218) led the Sooners in Miami, carding rounds of 75-71-72 en route to a T7 finish, tying her career-best placement. Fortuna sunk 11 birdies over 54 holes of play at a challenging Biltmore Golf Club, the most among OU golfers.
“Mikha played really solid all week,” Drouin-Luttrell said. “She played well, even though the course and conditions played tough. She battled and fought every single shot for her team.”
Libby Winans (+6, 222) used a strong second and third round to claim her second top-15 finish of the season. The sophomore scored a 78 and 74 on Monday, before shining in the final round on Tuesday, firing a 2-under, 70, to climb up the leaderboard and secure a tie for 14th.
Sydney Youngblood (+12, 228) sunk 10 birdies and finished in a tie for 31st after a final-round 74. Ellen Secor had the best final round among the Sooners, firing a 4-under, 68, on Tuesday to move up 24 spots and finish in a tie for 38th at 13-over. Secor was one of only four golfers to score a round in the 60s at the event.
Kaitlin Milligan finished in a tie for 47th after shooting a 16-over at the event.
Playing as an individual, Maria Fernanda Martinez finished in a tie for 44th after firing a 79 in the final round to conclude her time in Miami at 14-over.
The Sooners now set their sights on the Clover Cup on March 13-15, an event they won in 2018.