March 8, 2007
The 14th-ranked UCLA women's golf team prepares to play in the annual "Mo" Morial, hosted by Texas A & M at the Traditions Club in Bryan, TX.
The par 72 golf course measures 6,462 yards. The 16-team field includes seven teams ranked in the Top 25, including Pac-10 powers Arizona State (No.2), USC (No. 11) and the Bruins. Eighteenth-ranked Texas A & M is the defending Big 12 champion.
"This is the first time that we'll be playing in Texas, and we're really excited about it," said Head Coach Carrie Forsyth. "The field for this tournament is very strong, and the golf course is considered one of the best university courses in the nation."
While the Bruins have not finished out of the Top 10 this season, they have struggled with inconsistency.
"We've had a rough start in our first two events of the spring," Forsyth continued, "but there were some positives about the last event at Arizona, and we're looking to build upon those this week."
In their last two events, the Bruins have started slowly, battling back in later rounds to improve their standing on the leaderboard. At the Regional Challenge (Feb. 12-14), they posted a first round score of 315 (+31), then shot a collective 38-over par for the final 36 holes. At the Arizona Wildcat (Feb. 26-27), their afternoon score on the first day (316, +32) proved to be their demise.
Still, two players are ranked among the nation's Top 30 and four of the five starters are ranked among the Top 100.
Senior Hannah Jun continues to improve after a four-month layoff last spring due a serious neck injury. She started the '07 season with a pair of Top 10 finishes, tying for eighth at the Regional Challenge and tying for ninth at the Arizona event. She was ranked 29th nationally at the start of this week.
Sophomore Tiffany Joh was ranked 28th nationally in the Mar. 4 GolfWeek poll. She tied for 23rd at the Wildcat and leads the team with three Top 10 finishes, seven rounds below par and six rounds under 70.
Sophomore Ryann O'Toole, ranked 90th nationally, ended the Wildcat tournament with a final round 72 (+1) after failing to post a score less than 77 in her previous five rounds. O'Toole's improvement from last season can be attested by her three Top 20 finishes and three rounds under par. She posted a career best score of 66 (-6) and tied for seventh at the Las Vegas Collegiate in November.
Ranked 98th nationally, freshman Sydnee Michaels boasts a 93% counter ratio, among the best on the team. She owns two rounds under par and one Top 20 finish.
The Bruins' fifth player is freshman Lalita Boonnoppornkul, who has shown much potential.