Charlottesville, VA -- The Virginia women's golf team will tee off Thursday at 8:10 a.m. in the first round of the NCAA East Regional Championships taking place at the University of Georgia Golf Course. The 54-hole event runs May 8-10. The top eight teams from each of the three 21-team regional sites will advance to the NCAA Championships along with the top two individuals from each site. The NCAA Championships are scheduled for May 20-23 at the University of New Mexico Championship Golf Course.
Virginia’s lineup for the NCAA East Regional will include freshmen Calle Nielson and Joy Kim, sophomore Whitney Neuhauser and juniors Lene Krog and Jennie Arseneault. Neuhauser, Arseneault and Krog (East Carolina) have all played in at least one NCAA Regional. Krog finished ninth at the 2007 NCAA East Regional to earn a spot as an individual competitor at the NCAA Championships.
The 2008 NCAA East Regional marks the fourth consecutive season the Cavaliers have advanced to a NCAA Regional site in the program’s five-year history. Virginia has advanced to the NCAA Championships once, finishing 13th in 2005.
Year Regional Site Finish Top Individual
2005 East Gainesville, FL 5th (881) Leah Wigger, 2nd (210)
2006 East Brown Summit, NC *8th (887) Leah Wigger, 6th (215)
2007 East Baton Rouge, LA 9th (874) Leah Wigger, 12th (213)
* Lost playoff for berth to NCAA Championships
Virginia is ranked No. 20 in the latest Golfstat standings and are No. 21 in the Golfweek poll. Freshman Calle Nielson is No. 46 in the Golfstat Cup standings while junior Lene Krog is No. 51. Nielson figures No. 38 in Golfweek’s individual standings while Krog is No. 45.
Virginia was second at this year’s ACC Championships, finishing one shot behind 13-time champion Duke. The Blue Devils won the event with a score of 871. The Cavaliers led the tournament after the first day, shooting 4-under 284 to grab a 10-shot lead. Duke and UVa were tied at 579 following 36 holes of play. The Blue Devils shot 292 during the final round to 293 for the Cavaliers. Virginia freshman Calle Nielson was third overall at 216 while fellow first-year Joy Kim was sixth at 219. Jennie Arseneault was ninth at 222, Lene Krog was 13th at 223 and Whitney Neuhauser was 24th at 230.
Rewriting the Record Book
Virginia’s first-round score of 4-under 284 at the ACC Championships was the lowest single-round score in Virginia’s history, bettering the previous best of 288 set at the 2007 NCAA East Regional. The Cavaliers’ team score at the ACC Championships (872) also set a record for the best 54-hole team score. The previous mark of 874 was also set at the 2007 NCAA East Regional.
Playing At Georgia
The 2008 NCAA East Regional will mark the third time the Cavaliers have played at the University of Georgia Golf Course in the past two years. All five players in the regional lineup have competed at the course during that time span. In March, Virginia was 10th of 18 teams at Georgia’s Liz Murphey Classic. The Cavaliers had rounds of 314, 310 and 307 on the way to a team score of 931. That was UVa’s highest team score this season and the first- and second-round scores were two of the three highest this year. Calle Nielson was fifth overall at 6-over 222. Krog (40th, 235), Arseneault (50th, 237) and Kim (67th, 241) also played in the tournament. Last season Virginia was sixth at the Liz Murphey Classic with a score of 905. Leah Wigger took medalist honors at 215. Whitney Neuhauser was 33rd overall at 228. Jennie Arseneault was forced to withdraw from the event due to a back injury.
The field for the East Regional includes (listed by seed): Duke, Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Wake Forest, Tennessee, Virginia, New Mexico, Vanderbilt, Louisville, South Carolina, Furman, East Carolina, Georgia State, Central Florida, Missouri, Indiana, NC Wilmington, Jacksonville State, Charleston Southern and Jackson State.