With Grace Rose playing the best golf of her collegiate career, the Kentucky women’s golf team recorded its best 54-hole score in the 37 years of the Southeastern Conference Championship.
Behind Rose’s 2-under 214, UK carded an 885 for the weekend, easily besting its previous 54-hole score. The Wildcats placed 10th overall in a field that featured six teams ranked in the top 25 and three in the top 10.
Rose capped arguably the best tournament of her career with a 1-under 71 Sunday to tie for 17th. The finish is the second best of her career and her 214 is her lowest score.
No. 8 Florida ran away from the field at the Greystone Golf & Country Club in Birmingham, Alabama, to win the SEC Championship at 22-under par. South Carolina’s Katelyn Dambaugh won the individual title at 12-under par.
UK shot below 300 in all three rounds in a tournament for the fourth time this season and the second in a row. The Wildcats appear to have regained their earlier season form when they racked up four top-five finishes in stroke-play tournaments, a school-record 54-hole score and a pair of individual championships.
Will it be enough to make the NCAA regionals for the sixth time in the seven seasons of the Golda Johansson Borst era? The Wildcats will have to wait until Thursday when the 2017 NCAA regional field is revealed to find out.
Rose certainly put together her best effort to try to will Kentucky further into the postseason. She notched her third round of par or better in her last four rounds with year another one Sunday.
The junior from Nicholasville, Kentucky, was once again sharp in the final round, shooting an even-par 36 on the front nine with a birdie, a bogey and seven pars. The considerably tougher back nine delivered two bogeys to Rose’s scorecard in the first four holes after the turn, but Rose closed her three-day weekend strong with three birdies in her last five holes.
Not only was the 214 the best of Rose’s career, it was the second-best 54-hole score by a Wildcat this season, behind Isabelle Johansson’s 208 at the UCF Challenge.
Freshman Sarah Shipley rose more than 10 spots to 42nd on the final day of competition with an even-par 72. The Hastings, Michigan, native was consistent throughout Sunday’s round, going out in 34 with two birdies and seven pars before posting a 38 with seven pars and two bogeys on the back nine. It was Shipley’s fifth round of par or better this season.
Johansson was uncharacteristically off in the final round. Her 79 on Sunday was her worst score in 28 rounds this season, a testament to her season-long consistency and sensational junior year.
Freshman Josephine Chang tied Johansson in 50th place at 10-over par after a 76 on Sunday. She fired an even-par 72 Saturday.
Senior Jordan Chael finished at 16-over par and in 66th place.
This week’s SEC Championship was played at the Greystone Golf & Country Club’s Legacy Course, a par 72 that played at 6,202 yards.
For the latest on the Kentucky women’s golf team, follow the team on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, as well as on the web at UKathletics.com.
‑ GO CATS –
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