May 8, 2014
CLE ELUM, Wash. --- Making its seventh consecutive appearance in NCAA regional competition, the University of Notre Dame women's golf team finds itself tied for 19th place following a 28-over-par 316 after the first day of competition (Thursday, May 8) at the NCAA West Regional. The three-day event is being held at the Tumble Creek Club (par 72, 6252 yards) at Suncadia Resort in Cle Elum, Wash.
The Irish are tied with No. 20 seed Chattanooga and are just two shots in back of Portland State and New Mexico, who both shot a 26-over-par 314.
Notre Dame is the No. 18 seed in its regional after earning an at-large berth. The Irish are among nine Atlantic Coast Conference teams in the 72-team field. Seeded 18th and ranked 54th by Golfstat in the West regional, Notre Dame also is joined by ACC foes Clemson (No. 5 seed and ranked 13th ) and Wake Forest (No. 6 seed and ranked 18th) in the very tough and competitive region that features nine teams ranked in the top 25.
For the first time in school history, the Fighting Irish are competing in the West region, though this is Notre Dame's 10th appearance in program history in regional competition. Prior to last season--when they was sent to the East regional--the Irish had been sent to the Central regional. This year's regional competition is being held over three days and play is scheduled to be completed by Saturday (May 10). Eight teams from each of the three regionals, plus two individuals, will advance to the championship finals that will be played May 20-23 at the Tulsa Country Club in Tulsa, Okla.
Five strokes separate the Irish from 16th-place Oregon, as the Ducks shot a 23-over-par 311.
The Pac-12 Conference proved dominant on the first day of competition as teams from that conference are holding down the first three spots. As expected, No. 1 seed and top-ranked Southern California leads the 24-team field with a four-under par 284. The No. 4 seed and 11th ranked host Washington Huskies shot an even-par 288 and are in second place. Arizona State (No. 2 seed and ranked sixth), shot a one-over par 289, good for third place.
One stroke in back of the Sun Devils is No. 12 seed Texas A&M. The 36th-ranked Aggies had an impressive first day with a two-over-par 290. Two teams, Michigan State (No. 8 seed and ranked 25th) and Oklahoma (No. 3 seed and ranked seventh) are tied for fifth following a three-over-par 291. Nine strokes in back of the Spartans and Sooners are Iowa State (No. 9 seed and ranked 26th) and UC-Davis (No. 13 seed and ranked 37th), both tied for seventh with a 12-over-par 300. No. 16 seed Wisconsin (ranked 19th) is in ninth place after shooting a 13-over-par 301.
There is a three-way tie for 10th with No. 7 seed Northwestern (ranked 19th), Clemson and No. 14 seed Denver (ranked 42nd). All three of those teams shot a 14-over-par 302. The other ACC team in the field, Wake Forest, shot a 16-over-par 304 and is 13th.
The Irish drew the afternoon tee times today and began play from the 10th hole.
Junior Ashley Armstrong (Flossmoor, Ill.) had the best round for the Irish and was the first to tee off for the Irish as she shot a four-over-par 76. Armstrong began the day with back-to-back bogeys on the 10th and 11th holes, but registered pars on the 12th and 13th holes before tallying her first birdie of the day on the par four 14th hole. She would go on to par three of the final four holes on the back nine.
Armstrong continued her consistency on the front nine with a birdie on the par-four first hole and then pared the next four holes before registering finishing with bogeys on the three of the final four holes.
Making her first NCAA regional appearance, freshman Jordan Ferreira (University Place, Wash.), a Washington state native, posted the next best score as she shot a seven-over-par 79. Ferreira's 18-hole round consisted of 11 pars.
Like Armstrong and the rest of her teammates, Ferreira began the day from the back nine. She stood at even par following the first five holes before posting bogeys on holes 15 and 17. On the front nine, she registered back-to-back bogeys on the first and second holes before rebounding with three consecutive pars on holes three, four and five, before finishing up her with three bogeys on the final four holes.
Sophomore Talia Campbell (Dallas, Texas) shot an eight-over-par 80. She finished the day with 10 pars and had one birdie on the par-four sixth hole.
Action begins early for the Irish on Friday (May 9) as all five players will tee off in the morning, starting at 7:30 a.m. (PST).