Johansson Opens NCAA Championships at 7-Over Par

May 22, 2015

BRADENTON, Fla. -- Representing the Kentucky women's golf team as its first competitor in the NCAA Championships since 1998, freshman Isabelle Johansson sits in a tie for 85th place after a weather-shortened opening round at the national finals in Bradenton, Fla. 

As expected for the final test of the 2014-15 women's golf season, the Concession Golf Club proved to be difficult to navigate as only seven golfers in the 132-player field shot under par on Friday. Adding to the already demanding Concession golf course was a slew of thunderstorms that delayed play in the afternoon and ultimately halted it in the evening.

Johansson made it through 14 holes and a lightning delay in the afternoon before play was finally suspended in the evening. She, along with nearly half of the field, will finish the first round Saturday morning at 8:30 before moving on to 18 more holes in the second round at approximately 9:50 a.m.  

Johansson started on the back nine and faced some adversity in the opening 10 holes of her collegiate debut in the NCAA Championships, but she regained her composure on the second nine. Playing in just her sixth collegiate tournament since joining Kentucky in January, she carded four straight pars and appeared to be finding a rhythm before play was suspended for the day.

The freshman from Sweden will have some ground to make up over the next two days but plenty of time to do it with 40 holes left for her this weekend and a little momentum on her side.

After 54 holes, the top 15 teams along with the top nine individuals not on an advancing team will advance for one additional day of stroke play on Monday to determine the top eight teams for match-play competition and the 72-hole stroke play individual champion.

The Golf Channel will provide live coverage of the final round of stroke play on Monday from 4 to 7 p.m. Fans can follow along with live stats for this weekend's second and third rounds at golfstat.com.

Johansson is carrying a historic flag for the Wildcats this weekend. She qualified for the NCAA Championships in thrilling fashion two weeks ago by winning a three-hole, three-player playoff at the South Bend Regional to capture the third and final individual spot.

With a gutsy iron shot to get up and down for par on the third playoff hole, Johansson became the first Wildcat to qualify for the NCAA Championships as an individual since Heather Kraus in 1998.

Consistency was the key to Johansson's NCAA Championships berth. She led the South Bend Regional field with 43 pars during the 54-hole tournament. Included in her career-best round was a 2-under-par opening round that put her in a tie for second place.

Concession Golf Club, designed by Jack Nicklaus and Tony Jacklin, is serving as the host to this week's conclusion to the 2014-15 women's golf season. Playing at 6,468 yards and par 72, the course is designed to be the ultimate test for the nation's top collegiate golfers. Set among the breathtaking natural beauty of native stands of oak, magnolia and pine, the Concession golf course offers unique challenges on each of its 18 holes.

Stanford's Mariah Stackhouse currently leads the tournament at 4-under par and Stanford leads the team competition at 3-over par.

For the latest on the Kentucky women's golf team, follow @UKWomensGolf on Twitter and on the web at UKathletics.com.

2015 NCAA Championships

Bradenton, Fla.
May 22-27
Concession Golf Club
Par 72, 6,468 yards