Arkansas Golf Fact Sheet #10 – Susie Maxwell Berning ClassicSusie Maxwell Berning InvitationalThe University of Arkansas golf team returns to the links traveling to the Sooner State for the Susie Maxwell Berning Classic. The event takes place at the Jimmie Austin Univerity of Oklahoma Golf Course, a par 72, 6,013-yard course in Norman, Okla.
The Susie FieldArkansas faces another large field with 18 teams teeing it up. The Lady Razorbacks, however, are the statistically the highest ranked team regardless of poll in the field. The Lady’Backs are ranked 24th in both the Golfweek and Golstat polls. Arkansas is 23rd in the Wold World poll. Baylor comes in ranked 40th in Golfweek and 38th in Golfstat, followed by New Mexico State (58/51) and host Oklahoma (60/61).
The Missing SECArkansas is the lone SEC team in this week’s field. The Lady Razorbacks were also the only SEC team in the Betsy Rawls field earlier this year.
Arkansas at the SusieArkansas has competed twice at the Susie Maxwell Berning Classic The Lady’Backs first took part in 2001 and returned in 2002. The team’s best finish was seventh.
We meet againArkansas has faced four of this week’s opponents previously this year. The Lady Razorbacks have finished ahead of Southern Methodist three times this year and defeated Tulsa and Kansas. Baylor has gotten the best of Arkansas in two tournaments this collegiate season.
Numbers fall for LewisEach season is different with different events, courses, conditions and competitions. As a result, it is often hard to compare a player’s stroke average from season to season. That being said Arkansas junior Stacy Lewis has cut a stroke from her stroke average since last season. Lewis averaged 74.32 as a freshman and 73.31 as a sophomore but this year, she checks in with a 73.21 average through eight events. Lewis has both the Susie Maxwell Berning Classic as well as the Southeastern Conference Championship remaining during the regular season and the possibility of two post-season events (Regionals and the NCAA Championship) to round out her scoring.
More numbersAshley Medders and Lucy Nunn also returned to Arkansas having played several collegiate rounds. Medders’ stroke average was 77.91 for her career and she’s just under that with a 77.05 mark this year. Nunn averaged 78.42 in four tournaments as a freshman and has dropped her score to 75.25 this year.
Lewis fifth in the SECAlthough the SEC has yet to release the numbers for this week, Stacy Lewis should rank fifth in the conference for stroke average. Georgia sophomore Taylor Leon, who also played at the Kraft Nabisco, leads the SEC with a 72.12 mark. Florida junior Sandra Gal is second with a 72.55 average followed by Vanderbilt sophomore Jacqui Concolino with a 73.13 average. Alabama senior Jenny Suh is four at 73.20 just ahead of Lewis’ 73.21 mark. Arkansas sophomore Lucy Nunn ranks 18th in the SEC this week.
Lewis Earns ExemptionJunior Lady Razorback Stacy Lewis earned an exemption to play in the 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship March 26-April 1 in Rancho Mirage, Calif. The event took place at the Dinah Shore Tournament Course at Mission Hills Country Club. Lewis played with the leaders finishing tied for fifth at the Kraft Nabisco Championship in Rancho Mirage, Calif., Sunday. One of four LPGA majors on the women’s tour, Lewis received a sponsor’s exemption and was one of three amateurs to make the cut. The Woodlands, Texas, native played her final round with Morgan Pressel and Sarah Lee carding a one-under 71 for a four-round 287 (71-73-73-70). Pressel carded a final round 69 for a 285 – just two strokes better than Lewis. Lewis, whose father caddied for her, bobbed around the leader board and received plenty of camera time in CBS’s coverage of the final round. She played much of the second nine at two-under but gave up a shot on the par four 16th hole after missing her putt. Lewis’ finish is the second-best for an amateur in the history of the Kraft Nabisco Championship. Lewis’ collegiate career includes back-to-back first team all-Southeastern Conference and all-American honors. She was the SEC Championship medalist at the 2005 SEC Championship and finished ninth overall at last year’s NCAA Championship posting a course record 66 in the final round of play. She is coming off a stellar summer amateur season in which she was the top-ranked amateur player in the nation for much of the summer. Lewis finished 2006 as the Golf World Amateur of the Year. Lewis also received an exemption to play in last year’s Owens Corning Jamie Farr Classic in Ohio. She did not make the cut in her only other LPGA appearance.
Who’s making the trip?Arkansas will travel five golfers to this week’s event but qualifying is still going on. Junior Stacy Lewis and sophomore Lucy Nunn have made all eight trips this year while freshman Alex Schulte and junior Ashley Medders have both competed in seven events for Arkansas.
Times getting shortIt’s hard to believe that time is getting short but that’s what’s happening for the Arkansas golf team. The Lady’Backs travel to Norman, Okla., for the Susie Maxwel Berning Classic April 8-9 concluding the regular season. Arkansas travels to West Point, Miss., and Old Waverley Golf Course for the SEC Championship April 20-22, before Regionals (May 10-12) and the NCAA Championship (May 22-25).