Courtesy: Jeri Thorpe, Athletic Media Relations
Victoria Vela made another strong showing at the Texas Women’s Open in the summer of 2011. For the second consecutive year, Vela finished as the low amateur in the professional event, moving up to tie for third overall. Vela counted back-to-back 69’s for 138, just five strokes off the lead.
Vela parlayed a strong freshman season into a solid summer in 2010. She opened play with a tie for sixth place at the Texas Women’s Open draining a 33-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole finishing as the top amateur at the event. She carded a 72-73=145. Vela also competed at the inaugural Hooters Women’s Collegiate Championship and was the highest finishing amateur at the event. Vela also competed in the inaugural Hooters Women’s Collegiate Championship before returning to campus.
Vela joined her future Razorback teammates in the summer of 2009 playing in the 79th Women’s Trans National Golf Association Amateur Championship in Loudon, Tenn. Vela opened play with a 155 in stroke play finishing tied for 38th overall. She advanced to the match play portion of the tournament falling in the first round.
As A Junior (2011-12)
Success and solid play continued to follow Vela in her junior season as she qualified for all 11 event events in 2011-12. Vela played 33 rounds last year, shooting 77.09 for the season. She posted a season-low 71 in the first round of the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational and finished with a season-best 223 in Austin, Texas. Vela tied for 13 overall in that event which was also a season-best. Vela matched her season-best 223 and tied for 33 overall at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic in the spring.
Vela continued her success in the classroom as well earning her second selection to the SEC Academic Honor Roll, her third selection to the National Golf Coaches Association All-Scholar Team and continues her streak with six consecutive semesters on the Razorback Athletic Department honor roll including a perfect 4.0 GPA in the spring of 2012.
As A Sophomore (2010-11)
Vela emerged as one of the most consistent players on the team as a sophomore in 2010-11. Vela took part in all 12 events shaving nearly a stroke off her freshman average finishing fifth on the team with a 75.92 mark. Vela posted a career-best finish in a tie for seventh at the LSU Invitational helping the Razorbacks in a dramatic two-round comeback after a tough opening round. Her score of 222 (76-73-73) is the second lowest of her collegiate career. Vela also finished tied for 12th in the first tournament of the year, the Susie Maxwell Berning Classic, in her second-best career place.
Vela shines in the classroom and earned her second consecutive selection to the National Golf Coaches Association All-Scholar Team in 2011. She is a four-semester member of the Razorback Athletic Department Honor Roll as well as the Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll for the spring semester.
As A Freshman (2009-10)
Vela had a solid first season of collegiate golf in 2009-10. She took part in eight events and was second on the team with a 74.99 stroke average. Vela’s top performance came with a tie for 20th overall at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic. She posted her lowest collegiate round with a 210 at the Southeastern Conference Championship shooting 70-73-76.
In the classroom, Vela earned selection to the National Golf Coaches Association All-Scholar team as well as the Southeastern Conference Freshman Academic and the Arkansas Athletic Department Honor Rolls.
Prior to Arkansas
Vela hails from Mansfield, Texas, where she was the district and regional champion as a senior with the Wolves. Vela captured a runner-up finish at the 2009 State Championship shooting a 147 (72-75) and she finished her career winning seven of 10 tournaments. A two-time Texas District 15-4A medalist, Vela won three consecutive high school tournaments as a junior. Her lowest two-day total is a 143 and her best round is a 69. Vela is the Fort Worth Star Telegram Player of the Year for 2008 and was a Dallas Morning News First-Team selection as a high school senior.
In addition to golf, Vela was a member of the National Honor Society and Key Club.
Victoria Kathryn Vela was born Dec. 14, 1990. She is the oldest of two children to Joe and Diana Vela of Mansfield, Texas. Vela has a younger brother, Troy, and is majoring in marketing at Arkansas.
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