Sooners fourth in West Regional, earn spot in NCAA Championship

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 The 12th-ranked University of Oklahoma women’s golf team qualified for the NCAA Championships for the third consecutive year by finishing in fourth place at the 24-team NCAA West Regional in Cle Elum, Wash., Saturday. The three-day event was played at the 6,252-yard, par-72 Tumble Creek Golf Course at Suncadia Resort.
The third-seeded Sooners carded a 21-over-par 309 Saturday to finish with a 54-hole 895 (+31). No. 1 seed USC won the event by one stroke over No. 4 seed and host Washington with an 876 (+12). No. 2 seed Arizona State finished in third place at +25. Other teams to qualify for the NCAA Championships, to be held May 20-23 in Tulsa, Okla., were Michigan State, Iowa State, Texas A&M and Northwestern.
Senior Anne-Catherine Tanguay finished tied for eighth place out of 126 competitors to lead the Sooners in Washington. Tanguay fired a final-round 73 (+1), the field’s fifth-best score of the day, to finish with a three-round 221 (+5). It marked the second straight year Tanguay finished in the top 10 at regionals (tied for second last season). She has finished in the top 12 in five of the last seven tournaments.
OU senior Chirapat Jao-Javanil was close behind, finishing in 12th place. The 2012 national champion logged a 223 (+7) over three rounds and registered the team’s only eagle of the weekend Saturday on the par-5 18th hole (her ninth hole of the round).
In her first NCAA postseason event, freshman Alexandra Kaui finished tied for 14th place with a 224 (+8). The Big 12 Freshman of the Year entered the final round tied for sixth before shooting an 80 (+8).
OU senior Emily Collins shot a three-day 229 (+ 13) and tied for 31st place, while classmate Kaitlyn Rohrback tied for 61st with a 235 (+19). Collins carded a final-round 79 (+7) and Rohrback shot an 81 (+9).
Big 12 Coach of the Year Veronique Drouin-Luttrell said her team is looking forward to its third straight NCAA Championships appearance.
"We are definitely excited to be heading back to nationals for the third year in a row," Drouin-Luttrell said. "It’s even better that the national championship will be in Tulsa. It makes for an easier trip in terms of travel. The conditions today were really tough. It was the windiest day of the tournament with cold temperatures. We are going to have a good week of practice and get ready for the national championship."
The 24-team NCAA Championships will be held at the Tulsa Country Club. The Sooners played the season-opening Dale McNamara Fall Preview there and finished in second place in a highly competitive 15-team field.
The 2012 and 2013 OU squads finished sixth and ninth, respectively, at the NCAA Championships, marking the first time the Sooners finished in the top 10 nationally in consecutive years.

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Ken MacLeod

Publisher Golf Oklahoma | Oklahoma's No. 1 Golf Source

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