Week #11: Big Ten Championships Signal Start of Postseason for U-M

April 23, 2012

Fri-Sun., April 27-29 -- at Big Ten Championships (French Lick, Ind.)
Live Scoring

Next on the Tee
The University of Michigan women's golf team will travel to French Lick, Ind., Friday through Sunday (April 27-29) for the 54-hole Big Ten Championships. For the first time, the conference event will be held at a neutral site and coincide with the men's championship, as the tournament will be held at the French Lick Resort's Donald Ross Course. The conference tournament will be played in a 6-count-4 format with the Ross course set up for a par 72, 6,007 yards.

The New Big Ten Championship Location
This year's Big Ten Championships are will introduce a new twist -- a neutral site. For the first time the Big Ten's women's and men's programs will compete during the same weekend -- Friday through Sunday (April 27-29) -- as well as play at the same resort -- the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Ind. In fact, conference event will be held in French Lick for the next three years.

The Championship Schedule
Thursday, April 26 -- Registration and Practice Round -- between 8:30 and 5 p.m.
Friday, April 27 -- First Round (18) -- 9 a.m., tee times
Saturday, April 28 -- Second Round (18) -- 9 a.m., tee times
Sunday, April 29 -- Final Round (18) -- 8 a.m., tee times

The Championship Field
All 12 conference schools will participate in the 2012 Big Ten Championships. The seeding for the tournament will be based off the Sagarin ratings -- #1 Ohio State, #2 Michigan State, #3 Purdue, #4 Northwestern, #5 Michigan, #6 Illinois, #7 Nebraska, #8 Wisconsin, #9 Indiana, #10 Minnesota, #11 Penn State and #11 Iowa.

The Championship First Day Pairings
Each Big Ten team's Sagarin ranking will reflect its seeding for the championships' opening round. Below is the pairings for the first 36 holes of the championship.

Tee #1 (player order: 1-6)
#1 seed Ohio State, #2 seed Michigan State, #3 seed Purdue (9 a.m.)
#4 seed Northwestern, #5 seed Michigan, #6 seed Illinois (10 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 1-6)
#7 seed Nebraska, #8 seed Wisconsin, #9 seed Indiana (9 a.m.)
#10 seed Minnesota, #11 seed Penn State, #12 seed Iowa (10 a.m.)

The Championship Second & Third Day Pairings
Day two and three pairings will be based upon each team's position on the leaderboard and will follow this time schedule:

Tee #1 (player order: 6-1)
#4 position, #5 position, #6 position (9 a.m.)
#1 position, #2 position #3 position (10 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 6-1)
#7 position, #8 position, #9 position (9 a.m.)
#10 position, #11 position, #12 position (10 a.m.)

Tee #1 (player order: 6-1)
#4 position, #5 position, #6 position (8 a.m.)
#1 position, #2 position #3 position (9 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 6-1)
#7 position, #8 position, #9 position (8 a.m.)
#10 position, #11 position, #12 position (9 a.m.)

The Championship Lineup
Michigan will bring six members for 2012 Big Ten Championships. Playing for the Wolverines will be: senior Meagan Bauer (Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc HS), sophomore Yugene Lee (Athens, Ga./Oconee County HS), freshman Linda Luo (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch HS), sophomore Alyssa Shimel (Pemberville, Ohio/Eastwood HS), freshman Lauren Grogan (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson HS) and sophomore Chelsea Pezzola (Bradenton, Fla./Saint Stephens Episcopal Prep).

Championship Experience
Meagan Bauer -- fourth: 2011 (t-14th, 302), 2010 (t-50th, 318), 2009 (55th, 335)
Alyssa Shimel -- second: 2011 (t-14th, 302)
Yugene Lee -- second: 2011 (t-41st, 312)
Chelsea Pezzola -- first conference championship
Lauren Grogan -- first conference championship
Linda Luo -- first conference championship

Line-up Consistency
Meagan Bauer, Yugene Lee and Alyssa Shimel have started all 10 events this season. In fact, Bauer has started her last 32, while Shimel has not missed a start in her two seasons, a string of 22 straight. Lee has started 20 of her 21 career events.

Michigan at Big Ten's
Michigan posted a school-best runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships in 2005, which was held at the U-M Golf Course. Overall, the Wolverines have eight top-five finishes. While no Wolverine has won the conference tournament, the Maize and Blue has had two runner-up finishes -- Ashley Bauer (2010) and LeAnna Wicks (2002). In fact, at the 2010 event Bauer set the Big Ten, U-M and University Ridge Golf Course record with her seven-under 65 in the second round.

Success Already Had at the Ross Course
Earlier in the fall season, Michigan finished third after an 893 (298-293-302) 54-hole total at the Lady Northern Invitational in what was the preview of the French Lick Resort and the Big Ten Championships. Meagan Bauer highlighted the Wolverines' tournament as she won her first collegiate event on the Ross Course with a 213 (72-73-68). In fact, five of U-M's six starters at the conference tournament played in the fall event. Yugene Lee tied for 11th at 225 (77-71-77), Linda Luo tied for 33rd at 232 (75-79-79), Alyssa Shimel was 43rd at 236 (78-75-83) and Lauren Grogan tied for 23rd playing as an individual with a 229 (79-76-74).

The Streak Continues
Yugene Lee's tie for ninth at the Knights & Pirates Invitational continued her streak of finishing among the top 40 in all 10 events this season. Lee has collected five top-25 individual finishes, including three top-10 finishes. She posted a career-best finish closing as the medalist runner-up at the Mary Fossum Invitational. This season, the second-year player has dropped almost two strokes from her freshman year average, posting a 76.20 per round.

Making the Most of Her Time on the Course
Newcomer Linda Luo has started seven of her eight events this season and ranks third on the Wolverines with a 76.71 per-round average. Luo's average is on pace to set the U-M freshman single-season record -- held by Laura Olin (2001-02, 76.95). She fired a career-best one-under 69 in the first round of the Challenge at Onion Creek -- becoming the 12th Wolverine ever to record a single tournament round below 70. In addition, her 230.13 54-hole tournament average ranks third on the U-M squad.

Breaking Through with Individual Title
Meagan Bauer's medalist honor at the Lady Northern on Oct. 11 marked the 26th overall time a U-M player has won an individual title and is the first for a Wolverine since the 2009-10. The last Wolverine to win an individual title was Meagan's sister, Ashley (2007-10), who won the 2010 Rio Verde Collegiate Invitational. Meagan and her sister Ashley are the first sisters to win individual titles in Michigan history.

Persistence Pays Off
Chelsea Pezzola will earn her first start of the season at the Big Ten Championships, also marking the first time she will compete in the conference tournament. She closed the season playing as an individual in the two final regular-season events. She is averaging 79.00 per round and 237 per 54 holes. She posted a season-best 75 in the opening round of the Knights & Pirates Invitational.

Back in the Mix
Lauren Grogan will start her first Big Ten Championships after having played in eight events during the season. In her first season, she has started seven events and holds a single-round average of 79.29. Grogan posted a career-best 221 total in the fall finale -- the Challenge at Onion Creek -- and carries a 237.88 per 54-hole average.

The Drive For the 11th
Michigan has been represented in regional competition by the team or an individual in nine of the last 11 seasons, making team appearances in 2001, '02, '05, '07, '09 and now '11. Laura Olin (2004), Amy Schmucker (2006) and Ashley Bauer (2010) made central regional appearances as individuals. Below is a look at how the Wolverines have fared during NCAA postseason action:

Michigan in the NCAA Postseason
• 2001, East Regional - 12th of 21 (308-308-309/925) - program's first invitation
• 2002, Central Regional - 6th of 21 (313-322-294/929) - program's first advancement to NCAA Finals
• 2002, NCAA Finals - 17th of 24 (301-299-299-300/1199)
• 2004, Central Regional - Laura Olin, individual, t-17th (75-76-78/229)
• 2005, Central Regional - 15th of 21 (301-320-305/926)
• 2006, Central Regional - Amy Schmucker, individual, t-71st (80-82-78/240)
• 2007, Central Regional - 13th of 21 (311-305-310/926) - hosted at U-M Golf Course
• 2009, Central Regional - 17th of 21 (312-321-327/960)
• 2010, Central Regional - Ashley Bauer, individual, t-76th (78-87-80/245)
• 2011, Central Regional - 18th of 24 (316-307-315/938)

Thu-Sat., May 10-12 -- at NCAA Regional (TBD)
Tue-Fri., May 22-25 -- at NCAA Finals (Franklin, Tenn.)

Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423