Charlottesville, VA -
The 13th-ranked Virginia women's golf team opens play at the 2010 NCAA Championships Tuesday at 8 a.m.. The 72-hole tournament takes place May 18-21 at par 72, 6,368-yard The Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C. It is UVa's fourth NCAA Championship appearance and its third consecutive trip to nationals. Virginia placed eight last year behind current junior Calle Nielson's sixth-place showing.
The Cavaliers qualified for the event by finishing fifth at the NCAA West Regional (May 6-8) held at the Stanford Golf Course. Nielson tied for first at the tournament. A total of 24 teams make up the field for the championship which includes 18 holes of play each day.
Other teams qualifying from the West Regional include Arizona, UCLA, Texas, Alabama, Stanford, San Jose State and Texas A&M.
Virginia is one of three teams from the ACC to advance to the NCAA Championships. Duke was fourth at the East Regional and Florida State was sixth at the Central Regional.
Teams qualifying from the East Regional include (final score): South Carolina (864), Tennessee (866), Auburn (868), Duke (868), Vanderbilt (871), Tulane (873), Pepperdine (877) and TCU (880).
Team qualifying from the Central Regional include (final score): USC (907), Arizona State (915), Purdue (931), New Mexico (936), Oklahoma State (937), Florida State (939), Oregon (939) and Kent State (940).
Virginia is paired with Oklahoma State and Vanderbilt during the first two rounds. Those teams open the tournament at 8 a.m. Tuesday from the 1st tee. Those same teams will begin their second round Wednesday at 12:20 p.m. from the 10th tee. The third and fourth round pairings are based on results.
Live scoring of the tournament is online at Golfstat.com. The NCAA will provide a video feed of the final two rounds.
The Virginia Lineup (Name, Class, Hometown, Stroke Average)
Nicole Agnello ... Fr. ... Longwood, FL ... 75.80
Brittany Altomare ... Fr. ... Shrewsbury, MA ... 73.70
Lauren Greenlief ... RFr. ... Oakton, VA ... 77.52
Joy Kim ... Jr. ... Duluth, GA ... 79.40
Calle Nielson ... Jr. ... Nashville, TN ... 73.77
This year's appearance marks the fourth time in Virginia's seven-year-old program's history the team has advanced to the NCAA Championships. The other appearances came in 2005, 2008 and 2009. Last year Virginia was eighth (1212) behind Calle Nielson's sixth-place showing (294). In 2008 the team finished 12th overall (1215), led by Lene Krog's 28th-place finish (299). In the Cavaliers' first NCAA appearance, current LPGA professional Leah Wigger finished second overall at the event held at the Sun River Resort in Sun River, Ore. She shot 3-over 287 including a 69 during the final round. The Cavaliers were 13th overall.
Previous NCAA Championship/Regional Appearances
2005 - 13th at NCAA Championships; 5th at NCAA East Regional
2006 - 8th (lost tiebreaker) at NCAA East Regional
2007 - 9th (tie) at NCAA East Regional
2008 - 12th at NCAA Championships; 5th at NCAA East Regional
2009 - 8th at NCAA Championships; 4th at NCAA East Regional
Virginia enters the NCAA Championships ranked No. 11 by Golfweek, No. 12 in the NGCA Coaches Poll and No. 13 by Golfstat. Freshman Brittany Altomare is ranked No. 28 in the Golfstat individual rankings and is No. 27 in the Golfweek standings. Junior Calle Nielson is ranked No. 33 by Golfstat and No. 32 by Golfweek. Altomare is ranked No. 4 among all Division I freshmen by Golfstat.
Reviewing the Fall Preview/Landfall Tradition
Played at the Country Club of Landfall last October, Virginia placed fifth in the Landfall Tradition/Fall Preview. The Cavaliers had rounds of 300, 296 and 295 for a 54-hole total of 27-over 891, 10 strokes behind first-place Duke. Four of the players in UVa's NCAA lineup played in that event. Brittany Altomare was second at 1-under 215, Nicole Agnello and Calle Nielson tied for 24th at 223 and Lauren Greenlief was 63rd at 233. Joy Kim was not in the UVa lineup for the Landfall Tradition.
Success at Landfall
In 2006 Virginia won its first tournament championship by winning the Landfall Tradition. UVa tied Michigan State atop the leaderboard at 902, but took the title based on the tiebreaker. At the 2007 Landfall Tradition the Cavaliers placed fourth in a 13-team field. Nielson finished fourth among all individuals as a freshman, shooting 3-over 219.