Gamecocks Finish 22nd at NCAA Championship
May 23, 2008
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - In its first NCAA Championship in five years, South Carolina women's golf finished in 22nd place after a final-round 303 at the University of New Mexico Championship Golf Course. The Gamecocks, who recorded a 72-hole total of 1235 to finish five strokes ahead of Arizona, turned in their best round of the event on the final trip around the course. Senior Camila Mori was Carolina's top finisher, taking 43rd place with a total of 301 (+13).
Mori was the Gamecocks' most reliable scorer throughout the tournament. She opened with a 78 (+6) then went on to score 73 (+1), 76 (+4) and 74 (+2) in her final collegiate event. Friday's final round was typical of the previous two as she played for par, took a pair of birdies when they were available and avoided significant mistakes. With a birdie on each half of the course, she moved up six places in the final round.
Sophomore Bénédicte Toumpsin posted the team's best score of the tournament on Friday with a 72 (E) to finish in 48th place. The NCAA East Region champion packed four birdies into her round, two on each nine-hole section, to shoot par for the first time in the championship. She finished with a 72-hole total of 303 (+15) after 76s (+4) in the first and third rounds sandwiched a second-round 79 (+7).
Bouncing back from a par of atypical scores on Thursday, senior Blythe Worley took 96th place after a final-round 76 (+4). After she opened the tournament with a 75 (+3), the Gamecocks' veteran battled to an 85 in round two and a 79 in round three. On Friday, she was sat at five-over through the first nine holes then carded birdies on two of the first three par-4s in her second half of play then held on to finish the stretch at one-under, making her tournament total 315.
Senior Whitney Simons wrapped up her college career with an 82 (+10) on Friday to finish in 114th place with a 72-hole total of 321. Sophomore Taylor Barrett matched her tournament low of 81 (+9) in Friday's final round, tying her second-round mark. Her total of 328 (+40) put her in 122nd place.
No. 2 Southern California claimed the national championship, holding off No. 3 UCLA and a final-round charge by defending national champion Duke. The Trojans won by six strokes with a 72-hold total of 1,168 (+16). UCLA's Tiffany Joh made up a two-shot deficit on Arizona State's Azahar Munoz in the final round to tie for first at 287 (-1). Munoz earned the individual title in a playing with a birdie on the par-5 18th hole.