Hayley Davis became the player in Baylor history to earn an individual NCAA Championship berth.
May 10, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Baylor women's golf team finished in 10th place after shooting 4-under-par 284 in Saturday's final round of the NCAA Division I East Regional at the SouthWood Golf Club. Baylor finished the 54-hole tournament at 17-over 881, just two strokes shy of earning an NCAA Championship berth.
The Lady Bears improved from 18th place to 10th place after posting the fourth-best final round in the 24-team field, trailing only the top three finishing teams Vanderbilt, South Carolina and North Carolina State. The round set Baylor's NCAA Tournament record, beating the previous low round of 286 in the final round at the 2012 NCAA West Regional.
Hayley Davis shot 5-under-par 67 in the final round, which was the second-best score of the day and launched her from 15th place into a tie for second. By finishing as the best individual on a non-advancing team, she punched her ticket to the NCAA Championships, which will be played May 20-23 at Tulsa (Okla.) Country Club. Davis' round also broke her own Baylor record for an NCAA Tournament round. The previous record was 69, set by Davis (twice) and Stani Schiavone at the 2012 NCAA West Regional.
Davis' 54-hole score of 210 also broke Baylor's NCAA Tournament record, topping the 212 she shot at the 2012 NCAA West Regional, and it tied her personal-best collegiate round of 67 shot at the 2012 SunTrust Gator Women's Invitational. Her second-place finish was also the best by a Baylor individual in the NCAA Tournament, one spot better than her third-place finish in 2012 and Josefin Svenningsson's third-place finish in 2004.
Louise Gateau-Chovelon finished in a tie for 29th place after shooting 1-under 71 in the final round for an overall score of 2-over 218. Laura Lonardi and Maggie Beth Byers both shot 1-over 73 in the final round to put them in a tie for 90th place with overall scores of 12-over 228. Hadas Libman shot 5-over 77 for an overall score of 14-over 230.
Davis became the player in Baylor history to earn an individual NCAA Championship bid, following Melanie Hagewood (2002) and Chelsey Cothran (2011).
Baylor finished ahead of seven top-50 ranked teams - No. 17 Central Florida, No. 24 Auburn, No. 30 Florida State, No. 31 Kentucky, No. 38 Louisville, No. 43 East Tennessee State and No. 48 Georgia.
Eight of the nine teams that finished ahead of Baylor are ranked higher than the Lady Bears.
Baylor recorded the fourth-best final round in the 24-team field, and the 284 tied for the eighth-best round of 72 played in the tournament.
Baylor's final round charge came up just short, as the Lady Bears missed out on earning one of eight NCAA Championship bids by two strokes. Baylor missed the NCAA Championships by just one stroke last season.
Davis led the team with six birdies, with three on the front nine and three on the back nine. She had one bogey and 11 pars.
Every other Baylor player had at least two birdies. As a team, the Lady Bears had 18 birdies on the day.
All five Baylor players started the round with birdies on No. 10, as the team combined to shoot 5-under-par on the hole. The Lady Bears were 3-under on No. 7, 2-under on No. 1 and No. 4 and 1-under on No. 2.
STAT OF THE DAY
4 - the number of Baylor NCAA Tournament records broken on Saturday. Hayley Davis broke Baylor's records for best round in an NCAA Tournament (67), best 54-hole total in an NCAA Tournament (210) and best individual finish in an NCAA Tournament (2nd). Baylor broke its team record for best NCAA Tournament round with a score of 284.
"We played well today, and it was a little too late, but it was nice to finish the tournament on a high note," head coach Jay Goble said. "The conditions today were the best we've had so far. We were only two shots out of going to nationals, and only one shot last year, but we played well for having three freshmen on the team."
Hayley Davis has advanced to the NCAA Championships as an individual and will play at the Tulsa (Okla.) Country Club from May 20-23. Follow @BaylorWGolf on twitter for updates throughout the season.