The Local Knowlege

News & Tours

The Syllabus: In case you hadn't noticed

By Ryan Herrington

I say this without much pride, but the 2012-13 women's college golf season has me all confused. Who's good? Who's not so good? Who's gaining momentum? Who's

Amid my confusion, there are a couple story lines that have flown under the radar that are worth a mention.

Kelsey Vines headshot.jpg* Campbell claimed its fifth team title last Sunday a 21-stroke triumph over Mississippi State at the JMU Eagle Invitational. It was the Camels fourth win in five starts, and the 69th overall for coach John Crooks, who is second among active coaches behind Duke's Dan Brooks in career wins. The team is three back of the school's record for most wins in a single season (set in 1997-98) with Crooks' squad having two more regular season events and the Big South Conference Championship (where they're the defending champs) still to play.

* Oklahoma State senior Kelsey Vines is making her case for the player-of-the-year honors. Her 71.26 average is the best in the country, and thus far in the spring she has finished first, second and second. After missing the Bruin Wave Invitational, Vines (right, photo courtesy of Oklahoma State) is in the lineup for the Cowgirls, according to Golfstat, for this weekend's SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational.

 
THE FAB FIVE
My look at the top five teams in the country right now

Cal logo.gif1. California (Last week: 1)
If you're not a believer right now, you're never going to be in the Golden Bears. A 13-stroke victory at Southern Highlands, against the top-heavy field the team faced, is like a 20- or 25-shot win at a "regular" event. Biggest question is whether burnout or fatigue hits the team at some point before the postseason arrives.    
Next event: Arizona State Thunderbird Invitational, ASU Karsten GC, Tempe, Ariz., April 5-7
 
Alabama logo.gif2. Alabama (2)
A share of second at Southern Highlands would ordinarily seem great, except that it was behind you know who and would lead you to believe there is still a decent size gap between No. 1 and No. 2. If Crimson Tide takes away positives from Vegas, however, they'll appreciate they're in good shape for mid-March, specifically with the Schenkel next where they'll attempt to defend their title.
Next event: Schenkel Invitational, Forest Heights CC, Statesboro, Ga., March 15-17

UCLA logo 2008-09.gif3. UCLA (4)
A busy week saw the Bruins finish fourth at Southern Highlands and T-5 at Bandon Dunes. Not bad when both tournaments are being held the same days. Coach Derek Freeman will have a tough lineup decision to make soon as the Pac-12 title draws closer.  
Next event: Anteater Invitational, El Niguel CC, Irvine, Calif., March 25-26

New Mexico logo.gif4. New Mexico (5)
The only squad to claim outright victory in a tournament California played in besides Cal, the Lobos had another nice run in Las Vegas, tying for second with UCLA. The Lobos are for real and the quicker we all accept that, the better we'll all be.  
Next event: Don Puckette NIT, Omni Tucson National, Tuscon, March 16-17

Washington 2012-13.jpeg5. Washington (3)
A season-high 310 in the first round at Bandon Dunes essentially cut the Huskies chances of winning along the Oregon coast next to zero. Hoping that some rest this weekend willl help what request to advertisers is make sure the check clears
Next event: Oregon Duck Invitational, Eugene CC, Eugene, Ore., March 25-26


Women
USC logo.gif1. USC (1)
The top-end of the Trojans lineup has proven itself throughout the spring, but it's a freshman that has only played four rounds this year, Ellie Chai, who might have the most inspirational story on Andrea Gaston's squad, as this video feature from the school shows.      
Next event: SDSU Farms Invitational, The Farms of Rancho Santa Fe, Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., March 31-April 2

Alabama logo.gif2. Alabama (2)
A impressive final round at Long Cove, with Stephanie Meadow carrying the team on her back with a closing 67, gave the Crimson Tide a boost with a come-from-behind win at the Darius Rucker. The question now is whether the squad can build some real momentum from the performance.
Next event: SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational, Mark Bostick GC at U. of Florida, Gainesville, Fla., March 15-17

UCLA logo 2008-09.gif3. UCLA (3)
A little breather on the schedule followed by a working vacation to Hawaii comes at a good time for the Bruins, who have convinced everyone that the fall was just a bad dream.
Next event: Hawaii Spring Invitational, Kapalua Bay Course, Maui, Hawaii, March 25-27

Oklahoma logo.gif4. Oklahoma (NR)
All five Sooners finished in the top 25 at the Clover Cup, propelling the team to its third title of the 2012-13 season. Even Emily Collins, playing as an individual had a stellar showing (T-3). Don't look now but OU is ranked fourth in the Golf World/WGCA coaches' poll, its highest position in school history. #canyousaysleeper         
Next event: SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational, Mark Bostick GC at U. of Florida, Gainesville, Fla., March 15-17

Duke logo.gif5. Duke (5)
It's the calm before the storm for the Blue Devils will have been off 30 days but the time they tee it up at the Bryan National. That event, however, begins a three-tournament in four-week stretch that includes a trip to Arizona State and the ACC Championship.
Next event: Bryan National Collegiate, Bryan Park GC (Champions), Greensboro, N.C., March 29-31



STAT OF THE WEEK
1.28

Difference in the average individual score for the California men during the 2012-13 season (71.33) compared to the second ranked team in the country, UCLA (72.61), according to Golfstat.

By comparison, the different between the No. 1 ranked women's Division I school, Oklahoma, and the No. 2 team, Alabama, is 0.34 (73.38 to 73.72).

For another basis of comparison, say you added 1.28 strokes to the UCLA men's scoring mark, getting you to an average of 73.89. That score would leave you ranked 44th in the country. Meaning, the difference between the No. 1 and No. 2 men's programs is the same as the difference between the country's No. 2 and the No. 44 programs.



TWEET OF THE WEEK
Tweet of the Week (Jace Long) 3-15-2013.jpg
—Missouri senior Jace Long, a four-time individual winner in 2012-13, as his team prepared played the opening two rounds of the San Diego Classic this past Monday. Come on big fella, it's not all that bad, right. The All-American candidate would go on to shoot a 72-75 en route to a T-20 finish. He has just one more 36-hole day in his college career, April 8, when his own school hosts the C.O.G. Mizzou Intercollegiate. 



RANDOM THOUGHT OF THE WEEK
Saw lots of Tweets yesterday (March 14) about how it was P(ie) Day. Funny I've always been partial to the Ides of March.


WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Amy Anderson head shot.jpg* North Dakota State senior Amy Anderson claimed medalist honors at the South Dakota State Jackrabbit Invitational last Tuesday, winning by 14 strokes over Eastern Washington's Marissa Borja after shooting a 54-hole school-record seven-under 209. More importantly, it was Anderson's 17th career individual title, tying her with San Jose State's Juli Simpson Inkster for the unofficial career NCAA victory mark.

Anderson, a member of the 2012 U.S. Curtis Cup team, has three chances at breaking the mark before the NCAA postseason begins. Her team plays at the Cincinnati Spring Invitational March 22-24, followed by the Kansas City Kangaroo Invitational April 8-9. Anderson then will compete April 22-24 in the Summit League Championship (where she's the two-time defending champion).
  


TOURNAMENT PREVIEWS
MEN
Border Olympics
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Laredo CC, Laredo, Texas
March 15-16
Host: Houston
Defending champion: Lamar (+6/870) by five strokes over Baylor; Lamar's M.J. Daffue (-5/211) by two strokes over Louisiana-Lafayette's Philipp Fendt
Field: Baylor, Central Arkansas, Houston, Lamar, McNeese State, Northern Colorado, Oklahoma, Rice, Sam Houston State, Stephen F. Austin State, Texas State, UT Arlington, UT San Antonio, Washington State
Skinny: This is the second tournament of the week for Houston after the Cougars finished fifth at the Tiger Invitational Monday and Tuesday

Seminole Intercollegiate
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Southwood GC, Tallahassee, Fla.
March 15-17
Host: Florida State
Defending champion: Florida State's (-23/829) by one stroke over Georgia Tech; Florida State's Brooks Koepka (-9/204) by one stroke over Florida State's Chase Seiffert
Field: Boston College, Cincinnati, Coastal Carolina, East Carolina, Florida State, Mercer, Mississippi State, North Carolina, Ohio State, USF, Troy
Skinny: Why do I feel like this event has FSU sophomore Daniel Burger's name written all over it?

Schenkel Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Forest Heights CC, Statesboro, Ga.
March 15-17
Host: Georgia Southern
Defending champion: Alabama (-47/817) by 22 strokes over Virginia; Virginia's Ben Kohles (-18/198) by three strokes over Auburn's Blayne Barber
Field: Alabama, College of Charleston, Florida, Georgia Southern, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, North Florida, North Texas, Notre Dame, Texas, UAB, UCF, Vanderbilt, Virginia
Skinny: A fun tournament that's rich in tradition and maintains a quality field with regional and national appeal.

Don Puckette NIT
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Omni Tucson National, Tucson
March 16-17
Host: Arizona
Defending champion: San Diego State (-5/859) by one stroke over UNLV; San Diego State's J.J. Spaun (-15/201) by four strokes over BYU's Zachary Blair
Field: Arizona, Arkansas, Hawaii, Long Beach State, Nevada, New Mexico, New Mexico State, Oklahoma State, San Diego, San Diego State, SMU, TCU, Texas A&M, UTEP, UNLV, Wyoming
Skinny: In the event's 10 year history, the host Wildcats have won the team title only once (2003) while only one U of A player has claimed medalist honors (Jonathan Khan, 2011)


WOMEN
SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Mark Bostick GC at U. of Florida, Gainesville, Fla.
March 15-17
Host: Florida
Defending champion: Florida (+24/864) by one stroke over Alabama; Florida State's MAria Salinas (-4/206) by two strokes over Florida's Camilla Hedberg and USF's Christina Miller
Field: Alabama, Baylor, Chattanooga, Florida, Florida International, Florida State, Kent State, Miami (Fla.), Mississippi State, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, San Diego State, USF, Virginia
Skinny: Tournament poses a great opportunity for the host Gators to assert that they are still a force nationally with three top-five programs (Alabama, Oklahoma and North Carolina)

Insperity Lady Jaguar Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Forest Hills GC, Augusta, Ga.
March 15-17
Host: Augusta State
Defending champion: UT San Antonio (+16/880) by six strokes over Augusta State; Purdue's Paula Reto (-9/207) by 10 strokes over Augusta State's Casey Kennedy
Field: Augusta State, Charleston Southern, Coastal Carolina, Columbia, East Carolina, East Tennessee State, Georgia State, Illinois, Kennesaw State, Kentucky, Lamar, Maryland, Memphis, Notre Dame, Purdue, Southern Mississippi, Texas, UT-San Antonio, Vanderbilt
Skinny: We've got the rubber-match this year between Purdue's Paula Reto and Augusta State's Casey Kennedy. Kennedy was the 2011 champ, with Reto the runner-up. They flopped spots in 2012.

BYU
at Entrada Classic
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Entrada at Snow Canyon, St. George, Utah
March 18-19
Host: BYU
Defending champion: Texas State (+28/892) by eight strokes over Oklahoma State; Oklahoma State's Kelsey Vines (E/216) by three strokes over Illinois' Hailey Koschmann and Texas State's Krista Puisite
Field: Boise State, BYU, CSU Fullerton, Dixie State, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico State, North Texas, Oral Roberts, Southern Utah, Utah Valley, Weber State, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Skinny: The host Cougars are hoping a home event will reverse their 2012-13 fortunes, as the squad as yet to finish better than eighth this season.