ATHENS, Ga. – The seventh-ranked University of Arkansas women’s golf team went undefeated in a pair of matches in the second and third rounds of the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic in Athens, Georgia, Saturday.
The Razorbacks opened the match play portion of the tournament facing SEC foe Auburn and tied the Tigers 2.5-2.5. Arkansas took on Oregon State in round three picking up a 3-2 win in the afternoon session.
The Arkansas underclassmen ruled the day with freshman Cara Gorlei and sophomore Alana Uriell winning both of their matches. Freshman Maria Fassi won her match against Oregon State and tied her Auburn contest.
In the first match, Uriell and Gorlei both won 3&2 in 16 holes. Uriell took advantage of back-to-back bogeys by her opponent on the first two holes off the 10th tee and would never trail in the match. She was up by as much as three holes winning hole No. 3 with an eagle finishing with the 3&2 victory.
Gorlei led by as much as four holes in her round after taking advantage of seven bogeys and a double by her opponent. Fassi was the only Razorback to play 18 holes in the first match. The back-and-forth battle saw the freshman take a one-hole lead late only to give it back on the final hole of the round for the tie.
Fassi came back in the next match with a dominating win for the Razorbacks winning 6&4 against Hannah Swanson of Oregon State. Fassi again opened her round on the 10th hole and took a 1-up lead on the fourth hole of the match. She had three birdies in her round and used eight bogeys and a double by Swanson for the win.
Uriell matched Fassi with a 6&5 win in 13 holes in her second match of the day. The California native put the match away with back-to-back birdies on the second and third holes to win 6-up.
Gorlei picked up her second win in the closest battle of the afternoon match. The match was square when Gorlei won the 16th and 17th holes. Both players birdied the final hole allowing Gorlei to escape with the victory.
From Shauna Estes-Taylor
Match play is a great format to give us good preparation for the NCAA Championship. We struggled in stroke play with a few big numbers but bounced back with some improvements and got some valuable experience along the way. We have another great match tomorrow versus No. 1 Duke. I’m really proud of the performances by Cara and Alana for winning both of their matches today. They did a great job of taking advantage of this format.
Match One vs. Auburn
Auburn 2.5, Arkansas 2.5
Maria Fassi (Arkansas) vs. Alex Harrell (Auburn), all square through 18 Alana Uriell (Arkansas) def. Mai Dechathipat (Auburn), 3-and-2 Cara Gorlei (Arkansas) def. Jamie Yun (Auburn), 3-and-2 Kelli Murphy (Auburn) def. Summer Roachell (Arkansas), 3-and-2 Michaela Owen (Auburn) def. Regina Plasencia (Arkansas), 4-and-3 Auburn wins via larger margin of victories.
Match Two vs. Oregon State
Arkansas 3, Oregon State 2
Maria Fassi (Arkansas) def. Hannah Swanson (Oregon St.), 6-and-4 Cara Gorlei (Arkansas) def. Chelsea Saelee (Oregon St.), 1-up Alana Uriell (Arkansas) def. Haley Nist (Oregon St.), 6-and-5 Ashlee Pickerell (Oregon St.) def. Summer Roachell (Arkansas), 2-and-1 Olivia Benzin (Oregon St.) def. Regina Plasencia (Arkansas), 3-and-1