Lady'Back Linksters travel to Florida for Match Play Championship

Jump to Match Playschedule FAYETTEVILLE – The eighth-ranked University of Arkansas women’s golf team travels to Florida for the invitation-only Hooters Match Play Championship hosted by the Golf Coaches Association of America and the National Golf Coaches Association Friday-Sunday. The tournament features the top 16 teams from last year’s NCAA Championships seeding the teams for match play. Arkansas, who finished 11th at last year’s national championship tournament, is a three seed and faces 14th-seed Furman in the first round on Friday. The winning team takes on the winner of the Texas A&M/Florida match later that same day. “It’s a huge honor just to be invited,” said Arkansas head coach Kelley Hester. “This event is based on last year’s NCAA finish. It’s even a bigger sign of respect to go in as the third seed overall in a very talented field. We’ve been working on some things in practice to prepare for the match play format. Most of the team plays in match play events over the summer so they feel comfortable.” Arkansas is traveling six athletes to Howie-In-The-Hills, Fla., and the Las Colinas at Mission Inn Golf Resort as the format allows for a lineup change for each match. Making the trip are seniors Amanda McCurdy, Courtney Mahon and Sarah Trew along with sophomores Stacy Lewis, Ashley Medders and freshman Lucy Nunn. McCurdy is coming off a tournament win in late October taking medalist honors at the Mercedes-Benz Collegiate Classic in Knoxville, Tenn. Mahon was Arkansas’ individual leader last week at the Fourth Annual Las Vegas Founders Collegiate Showdown and both are playing well this fall. Medders also has a win under her belt taking the top spot at Arkansas’ own Tyson/Embassy Suites Invitational in mid-October. The field for this year’s Match Play includes Arizona State, UC-Irvine, Florida, Furman, Michigan State, Missouri, Oklahoma State, Purdue, Southern California, Stanford, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Tulane, UCLA and Washington. The SEC is well-represented with three members, Arkansas, Florida and Tennessee, attending the event. Five Pacific-10 teams are in the filed while the Big 12 has three members. “This is a completely different format than what we are used to playing in college competition,” said Hester, “but it’s a format we’re all very comfortable with. We’re looking forward to playing a lot of matches this weekend.” The Match Play Championship is the final event of the fall for the Lady Razorbacks. Arkansas will break from competition returning to action at the Northrop Grumman Regional Challenge Feb. 13-15, in Palos Verdes, Calif. For more information about Arkansas women’s golf, please log on to LADYBACKS.COM.

Women’s Bracket

#1 UCLA vs. #16 UC Irvine

#8 Washington vs. #9 Michigan State

#4 Arizona State vs. #13 Missouri

#5 Southern California vs. #12 Tulane

#3 Arkansas vs. #14 Furman

#6 Texas A&M vs. #11 Florida

#7 Tennessee vs. #10 Stanford

#2 Purdue vs. #15 Oklahoma State