SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — After 54 holes of stroke play, the field of 30 teams at the NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championship is now 15 after Sunday evening’s cut.
Stanford, the defending national champion, took the lead on the hardest scoring day yet at Grayhawk Golf Club. Wake Forest, which led after the first two days, is tied for second with Texas. USC and Florida State are the only other teams under par.
USC’s Catherine Park, fresh off her NCAA record-tying round Saturday, leads the individual competition by four shots with 18 to play. There’s a three way for second that includes Rose Zhang, the defending NCAA individual champ.
Come Monday, the top eight teams after the final round of stroke play will make match play, which begins Tuesday morning.
NCAA: Team scores | Individual scores | Photos
Meet the 15 teams who made the first cut at Grayhawk.
1. Stanford (13 under)
A day after setting an NCAA record for lowest round in an NCAA Championship, the Cardinal finished strong. Sadie Englemann made eagle on the par-5 18th, and Zhang added a birdie of her own after a narrow eagle miss. Stanford sits at 13-under 851 trying to lock up the top seed to head into match play.
T-2. Wake Forest (6 under)
Wake Forest struggled on Sunday, carding an 11-over 299 after back-to-back stellar rounds to open. Lauren Walsh, who led the individual competition when Sunday started at 10 under, carded a septuple bogey 11 on the par-5 fourth hole. However, the Demon Deacons missed the 15-team cut last year, so it’s a major step forward this time around.
T-2. Texas (6 under)
Texas had a stellar round Saturday and followed it up with a strong 2-over performance on Sunday, moving into a tie for second. It’s good enough to put the Longhorns in the final grouping with Stanford and Wake Forest, the top two seeds, in the final day of stroke play. Huai-Chien Hsu is 4 under and T-8.
4. USC (2 under)
USC matched Texas with a 2-over 70 and sits at 2 under overall. Park has carried the Trojans thus far. Although Amari Avery struggled Sunday, don’t expect that to carry over into Monday’s round. The Pac-12 Champions are in great position to make match play.
5. Florida State (1 under)
The only other team under par after the first three rounds, Florida State has also put together a strong first three days. Charlotte Heath shot 3-under 69 on Sunday and is 5 under for the tournament. Lottie Woad and Amelia Williamson have also played strong for the Seminoles, which are in a great spot to make Tuesday’s match play quarterfinals.
6. South Carolina (even par)
South Carolina was in the top three after two rounds but struggled on Sunday, shooting 14 over as a team and dropping to sixth. The Gamecocks are even par for the tournament, a strong spot to be in and currently five shots over the projected cut line to make match play. However, they’ll need to be sharper Monday. Four different players carded a double bogey on Sunday.
T-7. Arizona (5 over)
Arizona was tied with Florida State for the best round of the morning wave at 1 over, and it moved six spots up the leaderboard and inside the current match-play cut line. Two Wildcats shot under par, but it was Pimmada Wongthanavimok who put together a 3-under 69 in the difficult conditions.
T-7. Texas A&M (5 over)
The last team inside the top eight is Texas A&M, which shot 10 over on Sunday but remains in a strong position to make match play. The SEC Champions relied on Hailee Cooper’s 73 and Jennie Park’s 74 to get through. At 5 over after the third round, Texas A&M will need a stronger performance on Monday to guarantee a match play spot.
T-9. Georgia (6 over)
Sitting one shot outside of the current top eight, Georgia is in a great position after a 6-over third round, sitting at 6 over for the championship. Jenny Bae, who won the Athens Regional, is at 1 under for the tournament and will need to have a big day Monday for Georgia to make match play.
T-9. Pepperdine (6 over)
Another team sitting one shot outside the current top eight is Pepperdine, which shot 8 over on Sunday and dropped two spots on the leaderboard. Lion Higo, Jeneath Wong and Reese Guzman each shot 1 over on Sunday. But, Pepperdine will need another round like it put together Saturday, a 9-under outing, to find its way into Tuesday’s match play quarterfinals.
11. Oklahoma State (7 over)
After a stellar start Friday, Oklahoma State has dropped off each of the next two days. The Cowgirls shot 280 on Friday, 291 on Saturday and put together a 12-over 300 on Sunday. Maddison Hinson-Tolchard is tied for third at 6 under in the individual competition and Rina Tatematsu is 2 under, but OSU (7 over) needs a couple more under-par performances to move up Monday and get back into match play.
12. New Mexico (12 over)
New Mexico has been a pleasant surprise, playing strong all week. A 13-over round Sunday pushed the Lobos to 12 over for the tournament and seven shots outside of the projected cut. New Mexico started on the back side, but it struggled on the front, carding only one birdie. To continue its strong run, it will need plenty more birdies on Monday.
13. LSU (13 over)
The Tigers came into the NCAA Championship after a big comeback in the final round of regionals to advance, and Garrett Runion’s team will need another big effort on Monday to make it into match play. Ingrid Lindblad shot 4-under 68 on Sunday, but no other LSU golfer was better than 3 over. Lindblad will need some help on Monday to make a big comeback, sitting at 13 over and eight shots back.
14. Mississippi State (16 over)
What a back-nine run to get into the top 15 for Mississippi State. The Bulldogs sat outside of the cutline pretty much the entirety of the first three rounds until the final few holes. Mississippi State needed to make up four shots in its final 11 holes, and thanks to an eagle from Isabell Pellot, it did just that and sits at 16 over heading to Monday, where it will need another run.
15. SMU (17 over)
What else can you say beside clutch. That’s what SMU was Sunday, and especially Michelle Zhang. She went out and shot the round of the day, 5-under 65, in the difficult wave nevertheless, to help SMU come from behind and earn a spot in the top 15. Now, at 18 over, work remains to try to get inside the top eight for match play, but maybe the Mustangs can ride momentum into Monday.
SMU’s Michelle Zhang. (Photo: SMU Athletics)
Story originally appeared on GolfWeek