No. 9 Lady'Back linksters return to action in Athens

FAYETTEVILLE — The ninth-ranked University of Arkansas women’s golf team returns to the course Friday at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic in Athens, Ga., as the regular season winds down. Arkansas sends a senior-dominated lineup to head coach Kelley Hester’s alma mater for the three-day, 18-team event. Senior Amanda McCurdy and sophomore Stacy Lewis headline the Arkansas attack along with seniors Courtney Mahon, Lindsey Hinshaw and Georgia native Sarah Trew. "I’d really like to play well in Georgia," said Hester. "Shauna (Estes, the Arkansas assistant coach) and I put a lot of pressure on ourselves as coaches at the Liz. We just want to see our team play well there. That would be very gratifying." McCurdy and Lewis have been the team leaders all season with McCurdy, an El Dorado, Ark., native, capturing two medalist honors this year. She leads the team with a 73.62 stroke average followed closely by Lewis with a 74.04 season stroke average. "Stacy and Amanda are in good shape," said Hester. "They’ve been playing well all season. Courtney turned a corner last week and I think she is ready to post some good numbers. Lindsey has hit a lot of good golf shots lately and has been a pretty consistent counter for us." The tournament is historically a tough field and this year is no exception. The Lady’Backs enter the week ranked ninth in the poll and are one of the higher ranked teams in attendance. Also scheduled to participate is No. 5 Auburn, No. 6 and host Georgia – the only two teams ranked higher that the Lady’Backs. The field also features No. 12 Vanderbilt, No. 13 Wake Forest, No. 19 Ohio State, No. 23 Kent State, No. 25 Washington, No. 28 Michigan State, No. 31 South Carolina, No. 38 Furman, No. 48 Florida State, No. 52 Mississippi State, No. 63 East Carolina, No. 64 Oklahoma, No. 83 Mississippi, No. 85 Coastal Carolina and Tulane. The event is the final regular season event prior to the SEC Championship April 14-16 in Nashville, Tenn. For more information about Arkansas golf, please log on to LADYBACKS.COM.