April 24, 2013
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Fri-Sun., April 26-28 -- at Big Ten Championships (French Lick, Ind.)
Next on the Tee: Big Ten Championships
It's championship time! The University of Michigan women's golf team will shift its focus towards its second season as the Wolverines travel to French Lick, Ind., Friday through Sunday (April 26-28) 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.
All 12 conference schools will participate in the 2013 Big Ten Championships. The official seeding will be announced at Wednesday (April 24). According to the latest Golfstat Relative Ranking, the current seeding would be Purdue (15), Michigan State (24), Northwestern (29), Ohio State (36), Penn State (51), Indiana (52), Wisconsin (56), Minnesota (67), Iowa (85), Michigan (90), Illinois (119) and Nebraska (132).
Thursday, April 25 -- Registration and Practice Round -- between 8:30 and 5 p.m.
Friday, April 26 -- First Round (18) -- 9 a.m. tee times
Saturday, April 27 -- Second Round (18) -- 9 a.m., tee times
Sunday, April 28 -- Final Round (18) -- 8 a.m., tee times
Below is the pairings for the first 18 holes of the championship.
Tee #1 (player order: 1-6)
#1 seed, #2 seed, #3 seed (9 a.m.)
#4 seed, #5 seed, #6 seed (10 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 1-6)
#7 seed, #8 seed, #9 seed (9 a.m.)
#10 seed, #11 seed, #12 seed (10 a.m.)
Second & Third Day
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 team, #5 team, #6 team (9 a.m.)
#1 team, #2 team #3 team (10 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 6-1)
#7 team, #8 team, #9 team (9 a.m.)
#10 team, #11 team, #12 team (10 a.m.)
Day Three: 18 holes
Tee #1 (player order: 6-1)
#4 team, #5 team, #6 team (8 a.m.)
#1 team, #2 team #3 team (9 a.m.)
Tee #10 (player order: 6-1)
#7 team, #8 team, #9 team (8 a.m.)
#10 team, #11 team, #12 team (9 a.m.)
The Wolverines will have a six-member starting squad as well as an invited individual in Jacksonville. Starting for the Maize and Blue will be sophomore Linda Luo (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch HS), sophomore Lauren Grogan (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson HS), freshman Catherine Peters (Clarence, N.Y./Clarence HS), junior Chelsea Pezzola (Bradenton, Fla./Saint Stephens Episcopal Prep), junior Yugene Lee (Athens, Ga./Oconee County HS) and junior Chelsea Pezzola (Bradenton, Fla./Saint Stephens Episcopal Prep).
Big Ten Championships Experience
Yugene Lee -- third: 2011 (t-41st; 312), 2012 (2nd, 217)
Lauren Grogan -- second: 2012 (t-14th, 225)
Alyssa Shimel -- second: 2012 (70th; 255)
Linda Luo -- second: 2012 (t-36th; 235)
Chelsea Pezzola -- second: 2012 (66th, 249)
Catherine Peters -- first conference championship
Michigan at the Big Ten Championships
Michigan has eight top five finishes at the Big Ten, including a runner-up finish in 2005 and a third place finish in 2002. The Wolverines have had three individuals close as the runner-up -- LeAnna Wicks (2002, t-2nd), Ashley Bauer (2010, 283) and Yugene Lee (2012, 2nd). Bauer shot and holds the Big Ten record with a seven-under 65 in the second round of the 2012 conference tournament.
Michigan returns the nearly the exact same lineup from a year ago at the Big Ten Championships. Yugene Lee, Lauren Grogan, Alyssa Shimel, Linda Luo and Chelsea Pezzola head back to French Lick for the second straight year. The only difference from a year ago is freshman Catherine Peters replaces former Wolverine Meagan Bauer.
Yugene Lee returns to French Lick after closing as the runner-up last year at the Big Ten Championships. After opening with rounds of 75 and 72, Lee closed with a two-under 70 to miss the individual title by a single shot. She is the third Wolverine to close second at the conference event.
Lauren Grogan and Linda Luo are the only Wolverines who have started all nine events this season. They are expected to make their 10th starts at the Big Ten Championships.
Linda Luo (75.74) and Lauren Grogan (76.93) lead U-M in scoring average, and one of them has finished as the top Wolverine in eight of the nine events this season. In fact, the Wolverine duo has finished 1-2 for U-M in the last eight straight events. Luo has led U-M five times, while Grogan has three times.
This season Lauren Grogan has dropped nearly two strokes (1.8) off her freshman year scoring average. This season, she is boasting a 76.93 per-round average nearly 1.8 better than her 78.73 average a year ago.
Linda Luo has four top-20 individual finishes in nine events this season. She was third at the Mary Fossum Invitational (Sept. 15-16), tied for sixth at the Wolverine Invitational (Sept. 22-23), tied for 15th at the Edwin Watts/Palmetto Intercollegiate (Oct. 28-29) and tied for 18th at the FSU Match Up Invitational (Feb. 15-17).
Linda Luo has dropped nearly 1.5 strokes off her scoring average from a season ago. This season, she leads U-M with a 75.74 per-round average, which is 1.43 better than her 77.7 scoring average as a freshman. She is close to setting the U-M sophomore record for scoring average held by Brianna Broderick in 2004-05 (75.50). Currently, Luo's average ranks as the seventh best in a single season at U-M.
Catherine Peters makes her Big Ten debut. She started five of seven events this season and carries a 79.10 scoring average. She shot a career-best 72 in the regular season finale -- Marsh Landing Invitational -- leading to a career-best 230.
Chelsea Pezzola equaled her career best by playing in five events this season. She is averaging a career-best 79.20 per round and produced new career highs for single-round (74) and 54-hole tournament score (227) this season.
Michigan has two top-five team finishes, including tying for the team title at the Wolverine Invitational held at the U-M Golf Course and tying for fourth at the Edwin Watts Palmetto Intercollegiate.
With the Michigan's win at the Wolverine Invitational, U-M recorded its 32nd team title in program history and second under head coach Cheryl Stacy. In 28 women's golf events played on the U-M Golf Course, Michigan has claimed 10 team titles and nine individual titles.
Michigan will carry nine players this season, none of which will comprise a senior class. The Wolverines will carry four juniors, three sophomores and two freshmen.
U-M has been represented in regional competition by the team or an individual in 10 of the last 12 seasons, making team appearances in 2001, '02, '05, '07, '09, '11 and '12.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
On the getting ready for Big Tens ... "We are really excited. The coaches are really excited and so am I. We have spent a lot of time practicing and working on the shots we know we will see when we get to the conference championship. We are just preparing as best we can right now. It has really been good as we have had more time to practice and work on our games while some other schools are still playing in tournaments."
On playing a French Lick last year will help her this weekend ... "Definitely. I remember every single hole. It is very hilly, like on No. 8 I remember pushing my cart up the hill and it was above my head. With a course like French Lick, it isn't about how good your golf swing is it's more of do you know how to play each hole and do you know how to play through certain lies - downhill or uphill. It is a very challenging course."
On finally getting able to practice outside ... "It has been great to get outside and really challenge ourselves. Like I said before, the coaches have really been pushing us and helping us prepare for the difference shots we are going to face. It has been nice to really find different places on our course to try and do those shots we will see."
On if she is ready for Big Ten's ... "I am just going to go out and give it my all and leave it all out on the course."
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
On postseason beginning with Big Tens ... "We are ready. We have had a lot of time to get out on the course. With the weather we have had so far in the spring we have been able to play in a lot of adverse conditions to really prepare us. It will give us a chance to adapt because as you know, you never know what you will get during Big Ten's."
On having experience on the championship golf course at French Lick ... "Personally, I really like playing at French Lick a lot. Playing there in the fall gave us a chance to get accustomed to the course before Big Ten's. I think that will be a great help to us. Getting some of the course knowledge will carry over for us, places to err if you need to, what side of the green to be on, things like can only help us."
On the team's mindset ... "We still have to go in with a controlled attitude. We can't be too crazy. This could be our last hurrah in the postseason. We need to go in and give everything we have and leave it all on the course. It is definitely a course where you can play it right you can score low, so that is my mindset. I need to be more aggressive and I am going to go out there and do the best I can. And you know me; I still have fun along the way."
LAST TIME OUT
Michigan wrapped up the regular season placing 13th with a 906 total at the Marsh Landing Invitational. U-M shot rounds of 305, 296 and 305 over the two-day event. For the eighth straight event, U-M was led by Linda Luo, who tied for 26th at 222, and Lauren Grogan, who tied for 59th at 229. Catherine Peters equaled her career best with a 230 total, helping her tie for 63rd. [ Recap ]
Thu-Sat., May 9-11 -- at NCAA Regional (Site TBD)
Tue-Fri., May 21-24 -- at NCAA Championships (Athens, Ga.)
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423