Women's Golf Heads to Alabama for SEC Championship

April 15, 2010

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -

The University of Kentucky women’s golf team opens post-season play Friday at the Southeastern Conference Championship at the North River Yacht Club (par 71, 6,057 yards) in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Seven top-25 teams are set to compete at the three-day, 54-hole event with 18 holes scheduled each day. Kentucky tees off Friday beginning on hole No. 10 at 9:30 a.m. EST. Tee times begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday as well.

"The team has worked hard to prepare for the SEC Championship,” head coach Myra Blackwelder said. “Everyone was very focused in preparation in the week leading up to the SEC Championship. Ashlee Rose, who was out of action with the flu, has returned to form and competed in our intrasquad meet Saturday and Sunday.”

Freshman Ashleigh Albrecht leads the Wildcats as the squad’s scoring-average leader at 76.88 strokes-per-round. Albrecht owns UK’s two highest finishes of the season, tying for sixth at the Bettie Lou Evans Fall Invitational (77-70) and taking eighth at the squad’s regular-season finale, the Anteater Invitational (75-75-73).

Senior Sara Hurwitch looks to make her fifth start of the season at the SEC Championship. Competing as an individual at the Anteater Invitational, Hurwitch carded a 14th-place 227 (79-72-76). Hurwitch’s other top-20 performance came at the Napa River Grill Cardinal Cup where she finished 15th (71-77-77).

Also posting a top-20 finish at the Anteater Invitational (77-73-79) was sophomore Ashlee Rose, who joins Albrecht and Hurwitch in the Kentucky lineup this weekend. Rose’s lowest 54-hole total came at the Challenge at Onion Creek with a 5-over-par 215 (74-70-71).

Competing in only two prior spring events, freshman Heather Lott also will make her fifth start of the year. Lott registered two top-20 performances during the regular season, tying for 17th at the Bettie Lou Evans Fall Invitational (74-76) and ending up 20th at the Anteater Invitational (77-75-78).

Although Lott saw limited action in the spring, Blackwelder is confident in the freshman’s performances. “Heather played her way into the SEC Championship lineup as a result of recent back-to-back solid tournaments,” Blackwelder said. “Heather had the best March overall of any Wildcat.”

Freshman Betsie Johnson rounds out Kentucky’s starting five as the only UK golfer to start in every tournament of the season. With a 226 (75-78-73), Johnson posted her best performance at the Napa River Grill Cardinal Cup, finishing tied for 18th.

The Wildcats fired a 912 (311-294-307) at the Anteater Invitational to place third, marking the squad’s second-best finish of the season. In September, Kentucky placed second at the Napa River Grill Cardinal Cup with an 898 (202-290-305).

UK’s 54-hole low came at November’s Challenge at Onion Creek when the squad broke two school records. With a third-round 284, the Wildcats broke the school’s single-round record, while senior Kristin Vincent fired a 5-under-par 65 to break the individual single-round record. Kentucky placed 11th overall at the event.

Last season at the SEC Championship, Kentucky finished 11th with a 918 (313-297-308). Mallory Blackwelder led the Wildcats’ effort, finishing tied for 26th (74-74-76). Auburn took the 2009 title behind a 1-over-par 285, while Marta Silva of Georgia took the individual crown with a 3-under-par 210.

Live stats for the 2010 SEC Championship are available at golfstat.com. For complete coverage of the Kentucky women’s golf team, stay tuned to UKathletics.com

2010 SEC Championship Field
No. 3 Auburn
No. 7 Alabama
No. 10 Florida
No. 14 Tennessee
No. 16 Georgia
No. 18 LSU
No. 23 Vanderbilt
No. 26 South Carolina
Arkansas
Kentucky
Mississippi State