April 18, 2013
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The 26th ranked University of Notre Dame women’s golf team (104-32-0) begins it run for the program’s fifth BIG EAST Conference title on Sunday, (April 21). The 54-hole BIG EAST Championship will be held for the second consecutive year on the par-72 Watson Course at the Reunion Resort and Golf Club.
The first day of play is set for an 8:00 a.m. start time. The Irish are scheduled to tee off on hole one from 9:40-10:20 a.m.
-Live scoring: hole-by-hole scoring is available via golfstat.com.
-Websites: bigeast.org / UND.com
-Social media (Twitter): @NDwomensGolf / @BigEastChamps
-Mobile device: Sign-up for “Irish Alert” for on-the-go scoring updates by visiting UND.com and clicking on the drop down fan center link at the top of the homepage.
DATE: April 21-23, 2013
VENUE: Reunion Resort and Golf Club – Watson Course (Orlando, Fla.) Par 72 / 7,257 yards
FORMAT: Teams will play 18 holes a day over the three-day period. Each team will carry a total of five golfers on their tournament roster with the top four scores counting toward team scoring. Play will begin from a stagger start on hole one through the three-day span for the Irish beginning at 8:00 a.m.
FIGHTING IRISH LINEUP:
(SO) Ashley Armstrong (Flossmoor, Ill.)
(FR) Talia Campbell (Dallas, Texas)
(JR) Kristina Nhim (Cypress, Calif.)
(SO) Kelli Oride (Lihue, Hawaii)
(FR) Lindsey Weaver (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
THE FIELD (SEED RANKING/GOLFSTAT RANKING): *Golfstat rankings are as of April 17th
Notre Dame (No. 1/26)
Louisville (No. 2/68)
South Florida (No. 3/94)
Cincinnati (No. 4/115)
Seton Hall (No.5/116)
St. John’s (No. 6/141)
Georgetown (No. 7/161)
Rutgers (No. 8/171)
BREAKING DOWN THE FIELD: The Irish finished the regular season with a 6-0 record over BIG EAST foes as those victories came over Georgetown (2-0), South (2-0) Florida, Cincinnati (1-0) and Louisville (1-0). Most recently, Notre Dame defeated the Cardinals by 10 strokes (935-945), April 5-7, at the SMU Dallas Athletic Club Invitational. The Irish remain undefeated all-time against Cincinnati, Rutgers and Seton Hall in the BIG EAST Championship.
STROKE COUNT – comparative and cumulative to the last three 54-hole tournaments by each team during the 2012-13 season:
Notre Dame (2,729)
Cincinnati (2,778) (+49 strokes)
Louisville (2,790) (+61 strokes)
Rutgers (2,806) (+77 strokes)
South Florida (2,818) (+89 strokes)
St. John’s (2,829) (+100 strokes)
Georgetown (2,868) (+139 strokes)
Seton Hall *did not complete in at least (3) 54-hole tournaments
CAREER BEST 54-HOLE TOURNAMENT SCORE:
Weaver: 211 (-5) – Susie Maxwell Berning Classic (Oct. 2012)
Armstrong: 215 (-1) – Insperity Lady Jaguar Intercollegiate (March 2013)
Campbell: 219 (+3) – Windy City Classic (Oct. 2012)
Nhim: 220 (+4) – BIG EAST Championship (April 2011)
Oride: 222 (+6) – Mary Fossum Invitational (Sept. 2012)
“Our strength as a team is our depth,” says Irish head coach Susan Holt. “We have five solid players that can shoot low scores. We are at a point in the season where we have to step up and execute and shoot the scores we are capable of. We still have room for improvement, especially in the area of managing our games around the course. We have to stop beating ourselves when we are out played. Eliminating careless errors needs to be a priority as we move into the championship part of the season. There are a lot of good teams, but the ones that don't beat themselves are the ones that will be playing in the NCAA Finals come the end of May. We have the talent to be one of those teams, but we need to help ourselves along the way to get there. We have to step up and be in control of our own game.”
THE COURSE: Designed by PGA Tour standout Tom Watson (five-time British Open champion), the private Watson Course is one of three 18-hole courses at the Reunion Resort Wyndham Grand Resort. The Watson Course is outlined by TifEagle hybrid Bermudagrass and is home to 15 different native grasses, azaleas and camellias. The Watson Course ranked No. 83 in YourGolfTravel.com’s “Best Courses of the World.” It also was No. 10 on GolfDigest’s “America’s Best New Resort Courses ” list in 2005. The Watson Course furthermore was ranked No. 9 for Golfweek’s “Best Courses You Can Play” and is credited with many additional merits since its opening in November 2004. The Watson Course has been given a 74.4 course rating and a 130-slope rating by the United States Golf Association.
“The Reunion course is one that all of our players have played in the past (even the freshman),”says Holt. “There is a top junior event hosted on this course each year. The course is very playable and it will give up some low scores. I think it is a course that is an equalizer and will allow more players to play well. We will need to show up and get the job done. Beating ourselves here will hurt us more than it would at other courses, because more players can get around this course with respectable scores. We will have to be focused and sharp so we separate ourselves from the field. If we can do this we will be fine. I know the team is excited and ready to get back out on the course and compete.”
FORECAST: Over the three-day span, the temperatures will hold at a high of 83 degrees and a low of 67 degrees. Scattered thunderstorms are expected to pop up periodically with at most a 40 percent chance of rain. Wind will move at 11 miles per hour out of the northeast.
LAST TIME OUT: The Irish recently competed in the SMU Dallas Athletic Club Invitational carding a three-day team total of a 71-over-par 935 (319-309-307). Notre Dame finished with the fourth-best round on the third and final day. Campbell led with a 10th -place finish carding a 12-over-par 228 (80-76-72). Armstrong nabbed her sixth top-25 finish of the season, tying for 16th, firing a 14-over-par 230 (78-73-79). Nhim achieved her best finish of the year tying for 26th and carding an 18-over-par 234 (79-78-77). The Irish placed 8th out of the 15 teams in the field.
TOURNAMENT VICTORY: Notre Dame captured its 34th tournament title in program history during the Briar’s Creek Invitational (March 25-26) in John’s Island, S.C., shooting a 42-over-par 906 (317-300-289). Armstrong defeated 95 competitors in the field earning her second medalist honor on the year, carding a one-over-par 217 (74-71-72). The Irish won by an eight-stroke lead over Maryland (914) in the field of 18 teams and surpassed Georgetown by 65 strokes.
“The team is dealing with the challenges of the spring quite well,” says Holt. “They picked up a quality win at the Briars Creek Invitational in very tough conditions. I have been coaching now for 23 years and those conditions with the 40 plus miles per hour winds and temperatures that were in the 40's was very impressive. They shot 289(one-over-par) the final round, which I think was one of the best rounds of golf I have ever witnessed given the conditions. “
COACHING STAFF: Two-time BIG EAST Coach of the Year (2008/2011) Susan Holt is currently serving her seventh year as head coach of the Notre Dame women’s golf program. During her tenure with the Irish thus far, Holt has coached the Irish to two BIG EAST Championships (‘08/’11) and three runner-up finishes. Under her guidance, three Notre Dame golfers have earned medalist honors at the conference tournament and the Irish have advanced to five-straight NCAA Regional appearances. In ’11 Holt directed the Irish to their highest finish in program history at the NCAA Central Regional tournament (fifth) and led Notre Dame into the NCAA Championship for the first time in school history. Prior to her career at Notre Dame, Holt lead South Florida to five Conference USA titles, was named Conference USA Coach of the Decade (1995-2005) and Conference USA Coach of the year on three occasions. Holt is assisted by Kyle Lynne Veltri. Currently in her eighth season as an assistant coach for Notre Dame, Veltri has helped the Fighting Irish post the top-six scoring averages in program history and has assisted Notre Dame to 27 all-Big East selections.
2012-13 BIG EAST AWARDS: Weaver was selected as the BIG EAST Women’s Golf Player of the Month, for the month of October 2012. The Irish rookie tied for second (twice) and third through the three tournaments she played during that stretch. Weaver fired under-par in all three tournaments with a total of five under-par rounds through the nine rounds played. Weaver was named the BIG EAST Women’s Golfer of the Week for the week of March 4-10 after tying for ninth at the Clover Cup (March 9-10) in her home region (Mesa, Ariz.), firing a one-over-par 217 (73-72-72). Armstrong was tabbed as the BIG EAST Women’s Golf Player of the Week for the week of March 11-17 and March 21-27. The sophomore secured the medalist honors after her winning efforts at the Briar’s Creek Invitational and the Lady Insperity Jaguar Intercollegiate.
2012 BIG EAST CHAMPIONSHIP: Armstrong won the conference title in a three-hole playoff over Louisville Emily Hass, carding a seven-over-par 223 (73-77-73). Notre Dame finished second with a 47-over-par 911 (296-313-302). The Bulls edged out the Irish by a single stroke (289-306-306). Notre Dame finished seven strokes better than third-place Louisville (918). Returnees Nhim (74-78-76-228) tied for fifth while Oride tied for 12th (75-80-83-238).
ALL-TIME BIG EAST AWARDS & HONORS: Fifteen different Irish golfers have been named all-BIG EAST through the 10 years the championship has been offered. Nhim attempts to become the fifth golfer in program history to be selected for three all-BIG EAST accolades and Armstrong searches to become the second golfer in program history to collect two of them. Since the inaugural year of the award in 2001, 24 Irish golfers have been named BIG-EAST Scholar-Athletes. Nhim searches for her third-straight scholar-athlete selection while Armstrong and Oride look for their second-straight conference accolade. Armstrong (’12) and Becca Huffer (‘09) have each been named BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, Weaver or Campbell will try to make it three names in that category. Notre Dame has additionally crowned five different champions throughout the history of the tournament. Armstrong seeks to become the first golfer in program history to win multiple medalist honors.
ALL-TIME BIG EAST PERFORMANCE: The Irish and the Cardinals each currently carry four conference titles on their resume. St. John’s and South Florida have each won one. Notre Dame last claimed the title in 2011 holding off Louisville by 13 strokes (915-902). Nhim was the highest finisher for Notre Dame (3rd) at the 2011 BIG EAST Championship, carding a six-over-par 222 (73-72-77). Since its beginning in 2003, at least one Irish golfer has finished third or better individually and has not finished worse than third as a team. Notre Dame is 44-9 (.830) overall at the BIG EAST tournament and 37-7 (.840) under Holt.
NATIONAL RANKINGS & HONORS (as of April 18): Weaver enters as the highest ranked golfer in the tournament at No. 16 followed by Armstrong who is No. 71 according to Golfstat’s April 11 rankings. Armstrong was announced on April 1 as Golfweek’s Women’s National Player of the Week after guiding the Irish to a first-place finish at the Briar’s Creek Invitational (March 25-26) and achieving medalist honors of her own, turning in a scorecard of one-over-par 217 (74-71-72). Notre Dame has reached as high as No. 14 in Golfstat’s national team rankings while Weaver achieved the No. 1 spot individually at the conclusion of the fall season.
GOLFSTAT’S TOP FRESHMAN CLASS RANKING: Weaver and Campbell ranked No. 4 on Golfstat’s Top-25 Freshman Class Impact Ranking with a 74.11 combined stoke average. The duo sits 1.16 stoke away from third-place Stanford.
PROGRESSIVE MOMENTUM: Notre Dame has had at least three golfers place in the top-26 positions within the last four tournaments through the nine tournaments played this year.
EVEN OR UNDER PAR: Collectively the Irish have compiled a total of 27 even or under par rounds this season. Weaver leads all active roster members with 10 followed by Armstrong who has six. Oride, Weaver and Armstrong have fired at least one tournament at even our under par during the ‘12-’13 slate, Weaver leads with three.
CAREER MEDALIST FINISHES: Armstrong is tied with Katie Brophy (’06) for the most individual tournament titles with three.
FLY LIKE AN EAGLE: Weaver has made eagle in three separate tournaments while Campbell achieved two eagles during the Windy City Collegiate Classic (Oct. 1-2).
TEAM CAREER STROKE AVERAGE: Notre Dame currently houses the top season stroke average in program history with a 299.64. The 2010-11 squad holds the best mark with a 299.70.
INDIVIDUAL SEASON STROKE AVERAGE: To this point, Weaver is on pace to break the program’s best individual season stroke average (minimal 20 rounds) as she currently has a 72.90 average going into the BIG EAST Championship. All-American So-Hyun Park (2007-08) is the currently leader with a 73.63 average through 32 rounds.
STUDENT-ATHLETES: The women’s golf team has earned the University’s Academic Excellence Award nine times and has been awarded the honor the last four years. The award is given to the Notre Dame team with the highest GPA of the semester. Nhim (2010-‘11, ‘11-‘12) Armstrong (‘11-‘12) and Oride (‘11-‘12) have been selected as a BIG-EAST Scholar Athlete. Armstrong and Oride were additional named to last year’s National Golf Coaches Association All-Scholar Team.
NATIONAL TOURNAMENTS: All five active roster members have played in at least one United States Golf Association (USGA) sponsored tournament. Armstrong (T-142nd) and Weaver (T-131st) each participated in the `12 U.S. Women’s Open at Blackwolf Run (Kohler, Wisc.). Oride (T-105th) played in the `12 U.S. Women’s Amateur Pub-Links tournament at Neshanic Valley Golf Club (Neshanic Station, N.J.). Campbell (T-33rd) was a participant in the ‘11 U.S. Women’s Amateur at the Rhode Island Country Club and played along side of Armstrong (T-69th). Nhim (T-87th) most recently competed in the 2010 U.S. Women’s Amateur at the Charlotte Country Club (Charlotte, N.C.). Oride leads the current active roster members with three USGA tournament appearances followed by Armstrong and Nhim each have played in two.
FUTURE DOMER: Jordan Ferreira (University Place, Wash.) signed her National Letter of Intent on Nov. 14, 2012 to join the Irish for the 2013-14 season. Currently in her senior year at Bellarmine Preparatory School, Ferreira ranks No. 24 by the Junior Golf Scoreboard, No. 30 by Golfweek and No. 47 by American Junior Golf Association in the class of ‘13. Ferreira has assisted the Lady Lions to three Narrow League championships (2010-2012) and three Washington 4A state crowns (2010-12). In each of the last two state championships (2011 and ‘12), she was runner-up for medalist honors and finished third in ‘10 during her freshman season. In May ‘12, Ferreira, a two-time Washington State Golf Association Girls Player of the Year, posted her best finish in a 36-hole tournament with an even-par-144 (73-71). Ferreira participated in the 111th U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship in ‘11 at The Country Club (par-71) in Cleveland, Ohio. She finished 119th with a 14-over-par 156 and fired even on the Par 5’s. Ferreira qualified for the event after firing a 72-even-par at the Oakbrook Golf & Country Club in Lakewood, Wash. In addition she was named to the HP Scholastic All-American Team in `12 and holds a 3.95 GPA through three years at Bellarmine.
HERE COME THE IRISH: Following the outcome at the BIG EAST Championship, the Irish await their invitation into the NCAA Regional tournament, May 9-11, at a location later to be announced.