SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – The University of Alabama women’s golf team has a share of eighth place, out of 24 teams, after the first 18 holes at the 2022 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships at Grayhawk Golf Club Raptor Course (par 72, 6,340 yard) in Scottsdale, Ariz., Friday. The Crimson Tide lineup turned in a 10-over-par 298, which is just three strokes shy of the top three and nine strokes short of first place.
The leaderboard shuffled with the wind all day, but No. 1 Stanford remained on top throughout the first round, forming 1-over-par 289 Friday. No. 19 Texas A&M is in third place on a 4-over-par 292, while No. 15 UCLA sits in third place after recording a 7-over-par 295.
A new name rose to the top of the Alabama lineup in the first round, as freshman Isabella van der Biest, a Southeastern Conference All-Freshman Team selection, handed over an even par to pace the Crimson Tide. Despite recording five bogeys on the day, she didn’t let one affect her next scoring opportunity, as the rookie responded with five birdies alike. So much so, that van der Biest recorded three straight bogeys on holes Nos. 3-5 and responded with three straight birdies on holes Nos. 6-8, including a chip-in birdie on the par-4 No. 6.
She is tied for sixth place, just one shot off the top three and four shots off the current leader.
van der Biest’s performance in the first round of the NCAA Championships comes just one week after she reported a career-low 71 at the NCAA Franklin Regional.
Despite Emilie Øverås beginning her round with a double bogey on the par-4 No. 10, she also didn’t let adversity influence her next shot. The junior recorded 10 straight pars in response, hanging around in the top 25 for most of the first round. Øverås capped the evening with a 2-over-par 74 and a share of 27th place.
Benedetta Moresco was having an uncharacteristic day, recording three bogeys and a double bogey on the back nine. However, the sophomore rallied an eagle on the par-5 No. 18 and never looked back. She turned in a 3-over-par 75, going even par on the front nine, and is tied for 45th place.
Veterans Polly Mack and Angelica Moresco reported matching scores of 5-over-par 77 in the first round, sharing 81st place.
Alabama will remain paired with host Arizona State and Virginia for the second round of stroke play, teeing off hole No. 1 at 9:25 a.m. CT Saturday. The weather forecast expects sunny skies and a high of 94 degrees, while wind could reach between 5-10 mph.
FROM HEAD COACH MIC POTTER
“Considering we were seven over after, I think, two holes, I’m pretty happy with where we finished today. I think the wind increased 5-10 mph about six to seven holes in a row, and the girls managed it really well, especially in positions when it could have gone badly. I’m really proud of how they handled adversity to keep themselves in the ball game. We have a lot more good golf ahead of us.”
- T6 Isabella van der Biest even-par 72
- T27 Emilie Øverås 2-over-par 74
- T45 Benedetta Moresco 3-over-par 75
- T81 Polly Mack 5-over-par 77
- T81 Angelica Moresco 5-over-par 77