Watch the emotional reactions after NCAA cancels Women's Regional in Baton Rouge
The return of the NCAA college golf postseason was supposed to be joyful time for programs that had seen the 2020 season cut short prematurely by COVID-19. But for 12 of the 18 schools competing at the NCAA Women’s Regional in Baton Rouge, La., there was only more frustration in seeing their 2020-21 postseasons end without their players getting to hit a shot.
Storms that dumped more than seven inches of rain since the weekend caused the NCAA Golf Committee to cancel the tournament at The University Club without any golf being played. The 54-hole event was scheduled to begin on Monday and wrap up on Wednesday.
With no golf played on Monday or Tuesday, officials had hoped to get in 18 holes on Wednesday, giving each team the chance to try to finish in the top six and advance to the NCAA Women’s Championship that will be held in two weeks at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale. However, after surveying the course, the determination was that it remained unplayable.
“Look, this is one of the most gut-wrenching decisions and announcements that I’ve ever been a part of,” NCAA Committee representative Brad Hurlbut, the Director of Athletics at Fairleigh Dickinson, told players outside the clubhouse. “Even though the course is playable, it’s not playable at a championship level.”
Without a round being finished, NCAA regulations state that the top six seeds in the regional advance to nationals along with the top three individuals of the six that were competing. Those teams are: LSU, Mississippi, Baylor, Oregon, Maryland and Alabama. And the players are: Karen Fredgaard, Houston; Nataliya Guseva, Miami (Fla.); and Hanna Alberto, Sam Houston.
For seeds 7-18—Oregon State, Houston, Miami (Fla.), North Texas, Purdue, Mississippi State, Tulsa, Sam Houston State, Kennesaw State, East Tennessee State, Jacksonville State and Quinnipiac—it meant disappointment and heartache. As officials addressed teams and fans outside the clubhouse, the frustration was evident:
According to a statement from the NCAA: “The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Committee regrets that the 2021 NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championships regional in Baton Rouge could not be conducted as scheduled this week. The University Club has taken on over 7 inches of rain in the past several days. The Division I Women’s Golf Committee, NCAA staff and the Games Committee in Baton Rouge have been in constant communication throughout the past several days about the course conditions that have led to this unprecedented and most difficult decision.”
The Baton Rogue regional was one of four being held this week to determine the field for the national championship at Grayhawk. The other three regionals played all 54 holes. Here are the other teams that advanced to the NCAA Women's Championship:
T-2. Arizona State
T-5. Kent State
Louise Yu, Vanderbilt
Beth Lillie, Virginia
Celina Sattelkau, Vanderbilt
• • •
1. Florida State
T-4. Michigan State
6. South Carolina
Mikayla Bardwell – Tennessee
Lauren Hartlage – Louisville
Christin Eisenbeiss – North Florida
• • •
2. Wake Forest
3. Oklahoma State
4. Virginia Tech
Kajsa Arwefjall – San Jose State
Brigitte Thubault – Fresno State
Anna Zanusso – Denver