This WeekArkansas travels to the program’s 13th Southeastern Conference Championship since adding women’s golf for the 1995-96 season.
Who’s traveling? The Lady Razorbacks will send senior Stacy Lewis, junior Lucy Nunn, sophomores Kristin Ingram and Alex Schulte and freshman Kelli Shean to this year’s championship.
About the SEC ChampionshipThis year’s event returns to East Tennessee for the first time since 1996 and this is only the second time the Lady Vols have hosted.
Last year’s SEC ChampionshipArkansas battled a strange set of circumstances at last year’s SEC Championship. Stacy Lewis opened play with a 73 on the first day but aggravated a long-time back injury and was unable to play the second and third rounds. Her teammates played well in the second round but scores slipped a bit on the final day and Arkansas finished ninth overall with a 906. Then-freshman Alex Schulte led the Lady Razorbacks with what would be her career-best carding a 222 (74-72-76) and finished tied for 14th overall.
About the CourseThe SEC Championship takes place in Loudon, Tenn., at Tennessee National. Greg Norman designed the course which opened Sept. 8, 2006. It will play to a par 72 and is 6,310 yards in length.
Who is in the field? All 12 Southeastern Conference members participate in the Championship. They are Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Who is the team to beat? Well, that depends on who you ask. There are three collegiate women’s golf polls and all are different. Florida is the top-ranked SEC team in all three polls this week. The Gators are ranked fifth in all three lists. Georgia is seventh in the Golfweek poll followed by No. 9 Auburn, No. 10 Alabama, No. 12 Arkansas and No. 17 Tennessee all in the top 20. Here’s how the teams look in each poll.
Arkansas best finish at SECsThe Lady Razorbacks vaulted to the top of the leader board finishing third overall at the 2005 SEC Championships hosted by Ole Miss. Arkansas missed a three-team playoff by one stroke. Then-freshman Stacy Lewis shocked the field winning Arkansas’ only SEC Championship. Lewis carded a final round 67 setting the course record at Tunica National en route to a 214 (72-75-67).
Did you know… …Stacy Lewis’ 214 at the 2005 SEC Championship ranks tied for 15th all-time at the SEC meet. Current Lady’Back head coach Shauna Estes carded a 210 in 1999. That score ranks fourth all-time. Estes also ranks tied for fifth for a two-day total (140, 1999) and tied for first for largest margin of victory (9 strokes, 1999).
SEC honors and awardsStacy Lewis is a three-time first-team all-Southeastern Conference selection (2005, 2006, 2007). She has also earned SEC Freshman of the Year honors (2005) and is a seven-time SEC Golfer of the Week honoree. Lewis was selected to the 2007 SEC Community Service team and is a three-time member of the SEC Academic Honor roll. The 2008 SEC awards have not been announced yet.
When’s the last time… …Arkansas hosted the SEC Championship? The Lady Razorbacks hosted the event in 2000 finishing ninth overall at Pinnacle Country Club. Kristy Kortuem paced Arkansas and tied for ninth overall with a 229.
Lewis holds all the recordsWith the success of Stacy Lewis, it is no surprise that The Woodlands, Texas, native holds nearly all the records at Arkansas. Here’s a look at those numbers:
|Low Round||66, 2006|
|Lowest Two Round||144, 2004|
|Lowest Three Round||207, 2006|
|Lowest Four Round||282, 2007|
|Lowest Season Ave.||71.88, 2008*|
|Lowest Career Ave.||73.89*|
|Most Season Rounds||35, 2005|
*prior to the SEC ChampionshipThe only Arkansas individual record Lewis does not hold – yet – is the career rounds record. That mark is 133 rounds shared by former Lady’Backs Amanda MCurdy (2002-05) and Courtney Mahon (2002-05). Lewis is currently third with 130 and will overtake McCurdy and Mahon shortly.
Lewis’ honors continueStacy Lewis is the most decorated golfer in program history. This year, her collegiate honors include: five medalist honors: three SEC Golfer of the Week and Golfweek Player of the Week honors this spring.
Brought to you by the No. FourArkansas is in the midst of a good season. The Lady Razorbacks have eight top five finishes in nine events. Arkansas has finished fourth four times this year.
Career numbers bettered this yearSophomore Kristin Ingram posted a career-best finish tying for 16th at the Wildcat Fall Invitational. She tied her career-best round with a 71 to finish at the UA Ann Rhoads and tied her career low with a 222 at the Stanford Intercollegiate. Junior Lucy Nunn posted a career-best 69 in the first round of the Mercedes Benz as did sophomore Tanica van As with a first round 77 at the Wildcat Fall Invitational.
A Coaching Name ChangeBy now, everyone is aware of the coaching change for this season as former head coach Kelley Hester departed for her alma mater and assistant coach Shauna Estes took over. There is another new twist for Estes — she got married in January. Estes will keep her maiden name and hyphenate it with her married name which is Taylor. She is now Shauna Estes-Taylor.