For the fourth time in the past seven years, Oklahoma women’s golf is headed to the NCAA Championships. The Sooners qualified for the national championship on Wednesday after finishing in sixth place at the NCAA Austin Regional, held at the par-72, 6,341-yard University of Texas Golf Club in Austin, Texas.
Oklahoma opened the regional with a 299 (+11) in Monday’s first round, finishing the day in 12th place and eight strokes out of the top six. The Sooners fought back over the following two days, firing a 282 (-6) on Tuesday and a 289 (+1) on Wednesday to break the cut line and punch their ticket to the finals with a 54-hole score of 870 (+6).
OU will be making its ninth appearance in the NCAA Championships and fourth under head coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell. The Sooners will be playing for a national title in their own state, competing at Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla. The 24-team event takes place May 18-23.
“We’re very excited to have qualified for the national championship,” said Drouin-Luttrell. “The girls fought hard and never gave up. That mentality in the postseason is huge. We will enjoy this for a few days and then start our prep for Stillwater.”
The Sooners were led by junior Julienne Soo, who tied for fourth place in the field of 96 golfers by carding a three-day score of 212 (-4). Soo had started the week with a 75 (+3) and sat in 47th place heading into the second round, but the Australia native fired a 67 (-5) on Tuesday and a 70 (-2) on Wednesday to climb up the leaderboard while guiding her team to a spot in the national championship.
Redshirt freshman Sydney Youngblood and senior Valerie Tanguay each shot an even-par 72 in the final round. Youngblood tied for 24th place at 219 (+3) and Tanguay took 69th with 232 (+16).
Freshman Kaitlin Milligan shot a 75 (+3) on Wednesday but tied for 29th with a three-day score of 220 (+4). Senior Hannah Wood finished with a 227 (+11) to claim 56th.
The Sooners advanced from the Austin Regional along with Arkansas, Texas, Florida, Baylor and Auburn. Arkansas won the regional with a score of 838 (-26).
Oklahoma last appeared in the NCAA Championships in 2014 where it took fourth place – the best finish in program history.