124th U.S. Open

Pinehurst No. 2

NCAA Championship

Texas A&M's Adela Cernousek wins NCAA individual championship in a rout

May 20, 2024

Alysa Rubin/NCAA Photos

Momentum is not overrated, as Texas A&M’s Adela Cernousek demonstrated on Monday, continuing a streak of quality golf and delivering the Aggies’ first women’s NCAA individual champion in school history.

A native of Antibes, France, and a junior at A&M, Cernousek took a six-stroke lead into the final round on the North Course at Omni La Costa in Carlsbad, Calif., and posted a one-under-par 71 to win by three strokes over runner-up Lottie Woad of Florida State, the reigning Augusta National Women’s Amateur champion.

“Honestly, I was just trying to stick to my game plan, just trying to hit the fairways, the greens,” Cernousek said. “The pins here can get very tricky so I was just literally trying to hit the greens. Just stick to my game and try my best and not thinking about anything else. It’s kind of crazy.”

The victory was the first of Cernousek’s college career, though her play in recent weeks and months has been stellar and suggested a breakthrough win was imminent. Last week, she qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open, and prior to that she had finished sixth in the SEC Championship, then third in the NCAA Bryan Regional. She came into the NCAA Championship 30th in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.

“A lot of hard work,” her coach Gerrod Chadwell said, explaining her newfound success. “She qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open this week, and I thought that really gave her a lot of confidence that she belonged on this stage.”

Cernousek was never challenged in the last round, and took a four-stroke lead into the final hole when the outcome was no longer in doubt and made a meaningless bogey. She completed 72 holes in 12-under-par 276.

Meanwhile, the Pac-12 led the way in the team competition, sending four of eight teams to match play to determine a team national championship. Stanford is the top seed for the fourth consecutive year, and is joined by USC, UCLA and Oregon. The others to advance were Texas A&M, LSU, Clemson and Auburn.

Wake Forest, the defending team champion, failed to advance, finishing ninth, two strokes out of the top eight.