Tulane will begin national championship play on Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
May 18, 2014
NCAA Championship Tournament Central
NEW ORLEANS - The Tulane's women's golf team is once again in the hunt for a national title with its fifth all-time appearance in the NCAA Championships field, including its fourth in the last six years, and will begin play on Tuesday, May 20 at the Tulsa Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Tulane will join golfers from Arizona and Texas A&M for the first two rounds. Each team posted a seventh-place finish in their respective region. The groups will open the first round from the 10th tee on Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. (CST) and from the first tee for Wednesday's second round, beginning at 11:50 a.m. (CST). Thursday and Friday tee times will be determined by team scoring.
Live results from the entire championship, as well as live video streaming from holes 16, 17 and 18 for the final 2 rounds, can be found online at www.ncaa.com. Fans can also check the official website of Tulane Athletics: www.TulaneGreenWave.com for daily recaps, video and photos from each round, or follow the team on Twitter: @GreenWaveWGolf.
"This year has been about growing as a team," Tulane head coach Lorne Don said. "Coming into the season with a new coach and losing an All-American like Maribel (Lopez Porras), the team with its four returners and two newcomers had a lot of growing to do, including myself. Over the last few weeks this group has turned the corner and has proven they belong at this level. They have lifted their games to the next level and that's exciting to see as a coach. I think if we continue to play with consistency and keep doing the things that got us here, there is no reason we cannot finish ahead of last year's ninth place finish. The sky is the limit for this team."
Tulane, champions of Conference USA, joins a field of 24 at the 2014 NCAA Championships. Along with the Green Wave, this year's Championship participants include Alabama, Arizona, Arizona State, California, Campbell, Duke, Florida, Iowa State, Kansas, Michigan State, Mississippi State, North Carolina State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Stanford, Texas A&M, UCLA, USC, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Washington.
The Green Wave is one of 15 teams in this year's field that also played in the 2013 Championships, and is one of nine teams that finished in the Top-10 a year ago (see page 17 for last year's field and results).
Tulane returns to the NCAA Championships for the second straight season and is coming off its best effort in school history with a ninth-place performance a year ago in Athens, Ga. The Green Wave fired a 31-over 1191 total and tied Michigan State and Oklahoma. The Green Wave also made back-to-back trips in 2009 and 2010 and made its first trip to the NCAA Championships in 2005.
Tulane will send out a line-up featuring one junior (Gemma Dryburgh), three sophomores (Silvia Garces, Madison Opfer, Emily Penttila) and one true freshman (Belen Goicoechea). Dryburgh, Garces, Opfer and Penttila were also in the line-up for Tulane's 2013 NCAA Championships appearance.
"I think we saw in the regional championships how important it is to have players with postseason experience in the lineup. They had a quiet confidence about them and did not allow any distractions. I believe we will see that same confidence carry into this week. We have four players that finished ninth at this event a year ago, so they know what it takes to compete at the highest level. We need to be patient every day. We are going to make mistakes out there, so it is important to deal with them and rebound. We need to give ourselves as many birdie opportunities as possible every day," Don said.
The Tulsa Country Club will host the 24-team, six individual 2014 NCAA Championships field. The par-70, 6,194-yard course was chartered in 1908 and the historic TCC golf course was reopened in July 2011 featuring a redesign by the acclaimed architect, Rees Jones. TCC is no stranger to hosting the national championships. The 2014 Championships mark the second time that this event has been held at Tulsa Country Club. Duke University captured the 1999 NCAA title at TCC.
Tulane last played the course as part of the 2013 Dale McNamara Fall Preview and shot a 28-over 868 total for 10th place. However in 2009, Tulane captured the Conference USA Championship at TCC.