May 4, 2012
Next on the Tee
It is NCAA postseason time! The University of Michigan women's golf team received its seventh NCAA Regional team bid and heads to Columbus, Ohio, to compete at the NCAA Central Regional Thursday through Saturday, May 10-12, at Ohio State's Scarlet Course. Overall, it marks the 10th (team and individual) NCAA bid for U-M in the last 12 seasons. There will be 24 teams and six individuals at the Central Regional vying for the eight team and two individual spots needed to advance to the NCAA Finals. The Scarlet Course will be set up for a par 72 and 6,246 yards.
The Other Regional Sites
In addition to the NCAA Central Regional in Columbus, Ohio, there will be two additional regional sites -- the East, hosted by Penn State at the Blue Course in State College, Pa., and the West, hosted by Colorado at the Colorado National Golf Club in Erie, Colo. From each regional, the top eight teams and top two individuals advance to the NCAA Championships, to be held Wednesday through Saturday, May 22-25, at the Vanderbilt Legends Club in Franklin, Tenn.
The Central Regional Field
The 24 teams competing in the central regional include (in seeding order): USC, Auburn, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Ohio State, Oregon, N.C. State, Virginia, Florida State, Purdue, Arkansas, Ole Miss, Kentucky, Texas State, South Florida, Notre Dame, UTSA, East Carolina, Michigan, UNC Wilmington, Harvard, Butler and Siena. The six invited individuals in seeding order: Madeleine Shiels, Nebraska; Alex Buelow, Stetson; Rika Park, Miami (Fla.); Brittany Henderson, Coastal Carolina; Leticia Ras-Anderica, Miami (Fla.); and Gabriella Wahl, East Tennessee State.
The Regional Schedule
Wednesday, May 9 -- Practice Round, 12:24 p.m. (No. 1 tee)
Thursday, May 10 -- First Round (18), 1:25 p.m. (No. 1 tee) - paired with East Carolina and UNC Wilmington
Friday, May 11 -- Second Round (18), 8:55 a.m. (No. 10 tee) - paired with East Carolina and UNC Wilmington
Saturday, May 12 -- Final Round (18), TBD, based on team standing (tee times begin at 8 a.m.)
The Regional Lineup
Michigan will bring five starters to the NCAA Central Regional. Playing for the Wolverines will be: sophomore Yugene Lee (Athens, Ga./Oconee County HS), senior Meagan Bauer (Grand Blanc, Mich./Grand Blanc HS), freshman Lauren Grogan (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson HS), freshman Linda Luo (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch HS) and sophomore Alyssa Shimel (Pemberville, Ohio/Eastwood HS). Sophomore Chelsea Pezzola (Bradenton, Fla./Saint Stephens Episcopal Prep) will make the trip and serve as the emergency player if a Wolverine starter is ill or injured.
Meagan Bauer -- second: 2011 (t-63rd, 233)
Alyssa Shimel -- second: 2011 (t-63rd, 233)
Yugene Lee -- second: 2011 (t-112th, 245)
Lauren Grogan -- first NCAA regional
Linda Luo -- first NCAA regional
Chelsea Pezzola -- first NCAA regional
Meagan Bauer, Yugene Lee and Alyssa Shimel have started all 11 events this season. In fact, Bauer has started her last 33, while Shimel has not missed a start in her two seasons, a string of 23 straight. Lee has started 21 of her 22 career events.
Michigan in the NCAA Postseason
Michigan 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 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 NCAA History
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)
2012, Central Regional - TBD
Familiar Regional Ground
Michigan has had many ties to Scarlet Course. First, the Wolverines played at the 2009 NCAA Regional, finishing 17th. Second, the course is in the hometown of Lauren Grogan. Finally, it was the home course for U-M head coach Cheryl Stacy, who was an All-America golfer at Ohio State from 1983-85. While at Ohio State, Stacy guided the Buckeyes to three straight Big Ten crowns (1983-84-85) and was a back-to-back medalist at the conference tournament (1984-85), where she earned All-Big Ten honors both years.
Three Rounds are the Norm
So far this season, Michigan has played all 11 events this season in 54 holes. Not a single event has been affected by weather or other circumstances. For the just the seventh time in Big Ten history and first since 2005, the conference championship was reduced to 54 holes. As a team, U-M is averaging 915.55 per 54-hole event.
Second Round is Moving Day
Michigan holds a first-round team average of 307.55; however, it drops nearly five full shots in the second for a 302.64 tally. U-M has averaged 305.36 in third rounds. The Wolverines tallied a season-best 290 in the second round of the Challenge at Onion Creek, Nov. 7-8, and have produced 10 sub-300 team rounds. Overall, Michigan averages 305.18 per team round, which currently ranks fourth all-time in school history.
Lee Earns All-Big Ten Honors
Yugene Lee was named to the All-Big Ten second team for her first honor of the kind, becoming the 10th overall Wolverine and the fourth sophomore to earn the prestigious accolade. She joins U-M's all-time listing that includes: Shannon McDonald (1996, 1st); Sharon Park (1997, 1st); Wendy Westfall (1997, 1st); Kim Benedict (2002, 1st); Laura Olin (2004, 2nd & 2005, 1st); Brianna Broderick (2005, 1st & 2007, 2nd); Ali Stinson (2005, 2nd); Amy Schmucker (2006, 2nd); and Ashley Bauer (2009, 2nd & 2010, 1st).
A Look Back at Big Ten's
With Yugene Lee's runner-up finish, Meagan Bauer's tie for 10th and Lauren Grogan's tie for 14th, Michigan closed fourth at the 2012 Big Ten Championships, which was played on a neutral site for the first time -- the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Ind. The Maize and Blue battled throughout the tournament and climbed to as high as second but eventually closed fourth with a 900 total, giving the Wolverines their highest conference finish since 2006 and eighth top-five all-time.
Michigan Totals from 2012 Big Tens
Michigan (305-294-301 = 900, 4th)
Yugene Lee (75-72-70 = 217, 2nd)
Meagan Bauer (74-72-77 = 223, t-10th)
Lauren Grogan (78-73-74 = 225, t-14th)
Linda Luo (78-77-80 = 235, t-36th)
Chelsea Pezzola (79-81-89 = 249, 66th)
Alyssa Shimel (86-82-87 = 255, 70th)
Lee Sets Multiple Bests at Big Ten's
Yugene Lee's runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships equaled the best finish for a Wolverine. She is now tied with Ashley Bauer (second in 2010) and LeAnna Wicks (tied for second in 2002) for the highest finish at the conference tournament. Her 217 was not only a career-best 54-hole tournament total, but it set the U-M Big Ten Tournament 54-hole record by 14 shots. Her final-round 70 (-2) tied her career-best single-round score and was also the third-lowest round all-time at the conference event.
The Streak Continues
Yugene Lee's runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships continued her streak of finishing among the top 40 in all 11 events this season. Lee has collected six top-25 individual finishes, including four top-10 finishes. She posted a career-best finish, closing as the medalist runner-up at the Mary Fossum Invitational and Big Ten Tournament. This season, Lee has dropped almost two-and-a-half strokes from her freshman-year average (78.18), shooting 75.85 per round.
Breaking Through with Individual Title
Meagan Bauer's medalist honor at the Lady Northern 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. For the season Bauer has averaged 76.39 per round. She fired a career-best three-under 68 in the third round of the Lady Northern for the third lowest single-round tally all-time at U-M, helping her to a career-best even-par 213 54-hole tournament score.
Making the Most of Her Time on the Course
Newcomer Linda Luo has started eight of her nine events this season and ranks third on the Wolverines with a 76.89 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.
Back in the Mix
Lauren Grogan started her first Big Ten Championships and made the most of it, tying for 14th with a 225 total. So far in her first season, she has started eight of nine events and is averaging 78.81 per round. Grogan posted a career-best 221 total in the fall finale -- the Challenge at Onion Creek and carries a 236.44 per 54-hole average.
Tue-Fri., May 22-25 -- at NCAA Finals (Franklin, Tenn.)
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423