Freshman Frida Gustafsson Spang
March 18, 2013
AUGUSTA, Ga. - East Carolina carded a final round 303 to finish in sixth place at the Insperity Lady Intercollegiate at Augusta State's Forest Hill Golf Club.
The Pirates (85-42), who finished one shot out of fifth place and recorded a wins against nationally-ranked UTSA (No. 48) and Kentucky (No. 34), posted their fifth top-six finish of the season with a three-day total of 907 (43-over par).
"I was really proud of our competitiveness despite out struggles on the greens this week," said ECU Head Coach Kevin Williams. "They were the fastest, most undulating greens we have seen this year and we struggled on them. Despite these struggles, we competed hard and beat some very good teams."
Freshman Frida Gustafsson Spang posted her fifth top-10 finish of the season after carding a final round even-par 72 to finish tied for ninth. The Kinna, Sweden native posted a 6-over par 222 and finished among the tournament leaders in par-3 scoring (fourth at 1-under par) and par-4 scoring (t11th at 5-over), while tallying 32 pars and eight birdies.
Junior Fanny Wolte (228/12-over) finished tied for 28th after a final round 8-over 80, while freshman Nico Engstroem Skaug (229/13-over) claimed a share of 31st following a 3-over par 75. Rounding out the Pirates lineup were sophomores Emily Eng (238/22-over) and Katie Kirk (238/22-over) who both tied for 63rd.
Purdue carded the low round of the day Sunday afternoon and used a late surge to overtake Vanderbilt and capture the team title. The 16th-ranked Boilermakers registered a 2-over 290 to edge Vandy by a single stroke. Purdue combined for nine birdies on the back nine and when 2012 ILJI medalist Paula Reto birdied No. 18 and No. 1, the Boilermakers moved in front for the first time all day. The title was the second in the last three years for Purdue, which edged tournament host Augusta State for the team title in 2011.
Notre Dame's Ashley Armstrong notched a 2-under 70 and claimed the individual title by two strokes over Reto. Augusta State senior Natalie Wille, who began the day with sole possession of the lead, tied for third with Vandy's Jenny Hann at 2-over 218, three shots back of Armstrong.
Vandy, which began the final round with a three-shot advantage over Purdue, was the highest ranked team in the field at No. 9. The `Dores finished 11 shots clear of third-place Notre Dame, while Texas and ASU rounded out the top five.
The three-day, 54-hole event featured the largest field in the six-year history of the event. Among the 18 teams were ASU, Charleston Southern, Coastal Carolina, East Carolina, East Tennessee State, Georgia State, Illinois, Kennesaw State, Kentucky, Lamar, Maryland, Memphis, Notre Dame, Purdue, Southern Mississippi, Texas, UT San Antonio and Vanderbilt. The field includes six teams ranked in the nation's top 50 and a total of 99 players will be in action.
UT San Antonio entered as the defending tournament champion while Purdue's Reto was back to defend her individual crown. The Roadrunners topped Augusta State by six strokes last spring while Reto fired a tournament-record, 8-under 64 in the final round on March 18, 2012 and won by 10 shots over ASU's Casey Kennedy with a total of 9-under 207.
The Pirates return to the course next Monday when they travel to John's Island, S.C. to participate in the Briar's Creek Invitational. The two-day, 54-hole event will be held at the Briar's Creek Country Club.