May 23, 2014
TULSA, Okla. -- Northwestern wrapped up competition at the 2014 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships Friday afternoon at the Tulsa Country Club. After 72 holes, Northwestern finished the tournament at 46-over to tie for 15th amongst the 24-team field.
Northwestern carded an 8-over 288 on Friday and was led by sophomore Suchaya Tangkamolprasert who had her best round of the four-day event, carding a 1-under 69. The Bangkok, Thailand native had a great tournament for the Wildcats and sat inside the top 20 for the duration of the event. She finished NCAA’s tied for 16th at 5-over 285 (72-71-73-69).
“I’m really proud of this group," Northwestern head coach Emily Fletcher said. "We came out of the box today and we said we needed to show some heart and make some birdies and they really did a great job of that. Overall, we played really pretty solid today, struggled a little bit coming in on those last tough holes, but this is a great group. We’ve made great strides this year and I couldn’t be more proud of them. All five of them are coming back next year and we’re adding a few more so we’re really excited about the future.”
NU was within striking distance of the top 10, sitting just three strokes behind Vanderbilt and Texas A&M who tied for 10th (+43) and five behind ninth-place Alabama (+41). Northwestern, who entered the tournament ranked No. 15, placed ahead of sixth-ranked Washington (17th) and 12th-Ranked Stanford (T-18th). NU was making its third trip to the NCAA Championships and secured back-to-back top-15 finishes after also placing 15th in 2013.
Third-ranked Duke won the 24-team tournament at 10-over 1130. Top-ranked Southern California finished two strokes behind for second while second-ranked UCLA was third at +25.
On Friday, Tangkamolprasert had four birdies to counter three bogeys. She began the day on the 10th tee and was 2-under through 16 with three birdies and a bogey. She bogeyed 18 to wrap up the back nine at 1-under but then went on a roll to start the front nine with four straight pars, a birdie on five and back-to-back pars on six and seven. Despite a bogey on eight, she recovered nicely on nine with a par for her fourth top-20 finish of the year.
“I feel awesome after today," Tangkamolprasert said. "It felt great having my best round of the tournament, which was an under-par round, on the last day. The first day was a little tough with the windy conditions but we all fought through it to place in the top 15 again, which is great."
“Just a tremendous effort by Suchaya," Fletcher added. "We talk amongst ourselves on our team about how much heart she has and how much she loves competing. She really looks at a big tournament like this as an opportunity for success and an opportunity to prove herself and just sort of take it up a notch. There’s evidence of that in her outstanding play. I look forward to her continuing to make progress and lead as well next year.”
Junior Hana Lee was two strokes behind Tangkamolprasert on Friday, scoring a 1-over 71, the same tally she had on Thursday. Lee came out strong on the back nine with seven pars and two birdies. After a bogey on one, she rattled off four straight pars and then wrapped up the round with back-to-back bogeys and back-to-back pars. She recorded a four-round total of 17-over 297 (80-75-71-71).
Sophomore Kaitlin Park and freshman Kacie Komoto each scored 4-over 74’s on Friday. Komoto was playing in her first NCAA Championship event and was the second-highest Wildcat finisher behind Tangkamolprasert with a 16-over 296 (77-76-69-74). The Honolulu, Hawaii, native had one of the best rounds of the tournament on Thursday, leading the Wildcats at 1-under 69.
Park had her second-lowest round of the tournament on Friday thanks to 12 pars and a birdie on 13. During the third round, Park helped Northwestern record its low 18 holes of the tournament as she finished the day at 1-over 71.
Sophomore Elizabeth Szokol wrapped up her second trip to the NCAA Championships with a 7-over 77 on Friday. The Winnetka, Ill., native had the low round of the tournament for the Wildcats on Wednesday, carding a 3-under 67, which was just a stroke off the program record for 18 holes and her new career low for a round. Szokol wrapped up the tournament with the same score as Lee at 17-over 297 (76-67-77-77).
It was another stellar season for head coach Emily Fletcher and her Wildcats as they competed against the nation’s best at the 2014 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships. The 2013-14 season featured five top-three finishes, including tournament wins at the Hurricane Invitational and Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic, eight top-five showings and a new program record for a round as the Wildcats shot an 11-under 277 at the Liz Murphey. All five Wildcats that competed at NCAA’s return to the squad for the 2014-15 campaign.
2014 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships
Northwestern – T-15th/24 • 305-289-284-288=1166 (+45)
T16 - Suchaya Tangkamolprasert – 72-71-73-69=285 (+5)
T74 - Kacie Komoto – 77-76-69-74=296 (+16)
T77 - Hana Lee – 80-75-71-71=297 (+17)
T77 - Elizabeth Szokol – 76-67-77-77=297 (+17)
T116 - Kaitlin Park – 86-76-71-74=307 (+27)
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