Feb. 22, 2009
The top-ranked UCLA women's golf team prepares to travel to the Arizona Wildcat Invitational, Feb. 22-24 at the Peninsula Golf Club in Sonora, Mexico.
The Peninsula Golf Club plays to a par of 72 over 6,146 yards. This season the Bruins have won five of six events and are ranked No.1 in two of the three major polls, GolfStat and the NGCA.
Fourteen of the 18 teams in the field are ranked among the nation's top 50 schools by GolfWeek, highlighted by No.1 Arizona State, second-ranked USC and third-ranked UCLA. In addition, three-time defending NCAA champion Duke is participating as well as sixth-ranked Oklahoma State.
"We're excited to get out and play again," said Head Coach Carrie Forsyth. "We did not feel that we played our best at Palos Verdes and we know that we can play much better."
At the Regional Challenge earlier this month, Arizona State won convincingly against a tough field and golf course. The Bruins placed third behind resurgent Wake Forest.
The best news for the Bruins was the re-emergence of senior Ryann O'Toole, who tied for fourth place, playing as an individual. O'Toole's final round even par 71 was one of the best scores of the day and vaulted her eight spots up the leaderboard. She played as an individual, but earned a spot on the travel squad this week.
"Ryann is a great addition to our lineup," said Forsyth. "She's played very well since the start of the season, and we are very happy with her improvements and what she has achieved."
In three starts this season O'Toole has finished in the Top 10, with Top 5 results in her last two. Her stroke average of 73.0 is three and a half strokes better than her career average and she ranks 32nd nationally.
Kono is UCLA's highest ranked player at No.8 on the GolfWeek poll. She won the medal play competition at the Match Play Championship and boasts the team's best scoring average at 71.8.
Joh is ranked 15th by GolfWeek and has a 72.5 scoring average with four straight Top 20 results, including a seventh place finish at Palos Verdes.
Yang and Uribe are ranked 31st and 52nd, respectively. Uribe has recorded four Top 20 finishes in five starts and Yang boasts three in four starts, including a victory at the season-opening Topy Cup.