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Camilla Hedberg has finished in the top-20 in every tournament this year.

Thursday March 28, 2013No. 5 Gators Go To Bryan National Collegiate For Final Regular-Season Tune-up

Greensboro, N.C.

Camilla Hedberg has finished in the top-20 in every tournament this year.

CLICK HERE FOR THE GATORS’ TOURNAMENT NOTES FOR THIS WEEKEND

 

As the season dwindles down, the competition continues to gear up for the fifth-ranked University of Florida women’s golf team as it will travel to the Bryan National Collegiate in Greensboro, N.C., for its final tune-up before the postseason begins. Play is set to begin tomorrow and consist of three rounds that will run through Sunday.

 

The Bryan National Collegiate will take place on the Champions Course at the Bryan Park Golf Center (Par 72, 6,386 yards) and will consist of a 17-team field, with nine of those teams currently ranked in the latest WGCA/Coaches’ Poll. Duke is the highest ranked team in the field at No. 3, followed by North Carolina at No. 5 and then the Gators at No. 6. UF is ranked No. 6 in both the WGCA and Golfweek polls, but is No. 5 in the latest GolfStat poll. Six fellow SEC teams will also be in this weekend’s field including: Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

 

“Despite the fact that we didn’t have the result we wanted at our home tournament a couple of weeks ago,” Florida head coach Emily Bastel said. “I think we feel pretty good about how we’re playing. We’re taking the same five players that we started here at home and it will be another good test. This tournament has a great field and a few SEC schools, so it will be a little preview of what we will see in a couple of weeks at the SEC Championship. We’re just trying to work on some specific things, stay focused and go from there.”

 

This will be the ninth tournament that Florida has played in this year and the team will be looking to make it nine-for-nine in terms of top-10 finishes as a unit. The Gators have not finished outside of the top-10 all year long and much of that success has come from its well-balanced lineup.

 

“Elcin (Ulu) had a great week at the Gator Invite, which did a lot for her and her confidence,” Bastel said. “We’ve been looking for that number four player to step into the mix. Obviously, Camilla (Hedberg) and Isabelle (Lendl) have had great seasons and Mia (Piccio) is solid for us in the three spot, so we’ve been looking for that four and five spot player. We shuffled it around a little in the fall and spring and been looking for some people to step up and Elcin clearly did that at the Gator Invite. Ursa (Orehek) had been injured, so this was her first tournament back after being off for almost two months and we were pleased with how she did and feel like there were a lot of positive things that she did that we can use to build off of. I’m happy with what the girls are doing and hopefully, we’ll be playing with a lot of confidence for the remaining weeks.”

 

In the Gators’ last tournament, junior Elcin Ulu (Istanbul, Turkey) turned in her best performance of the season, finishing tied for sixth and a final tournament score of 215, her lowest 54-hole total of the season. It’s also her second top-10 finish as she also finished tied for third at the 36-hole Florida Challenge back in late January. Ulu’s stroke average is down to a season-low, 75.4, good for fourth on the team.

 

As for the Orange and Blue’s top three players in the lineup, sophomore Camilla Hedberg (Sitges, Spain) carded another top-10 performance with a tie for ninth finish at the Gator Invite. It’s Hedberg’s sixth tournament finish in the top-10 and continued a string of eight-straight top-20 finishes this season. Hedberg has played in every tournament this season and holds the team’s best stroke average at 71.5. The tournament this weekend will also best Hedberg’s final collegiate tournament before traveling to California to play in the LPGA’s Kraft Nabisco Championship on sponsor exemption. The Kraft Nabisco is the LPGA’s first major tournament of the season and Hedberg is one of the top amateur players entered in the field.

 

Joining Hedberg in that Kraft Nabisco field will be teammate, Isabelle Lendl (Goshen, Conn.), but first she will tee it up at the Bryan National and look for an eighth-straight top-25 finish. Last time out, Lendl finished tied for 20th after rounds of 76-73-72 for a 221 (+11), her lowest 54-hole score of the spring. Lendl is right behind Hedberg in the team’s stroke average rankings at 72.2 and continues to be ranked in the top-10 of the nation’s individual’s by GolfStat.com at No. 9.

 

Senior Mia Piccio (Bacolod City, Philippines) will hold down the No. 3 spot for the Gators this weekend as she is coming off a 19th-place finish at the Gator Invite, her second highest finish of the spring. Piccio was consistent all weekend long with rounds of 73-73-74 for a 220 (+10) and will look to continue that consistent play this weekend against a tough Bryan National Collegiate field.

 

Filling out the five-spot for Florida will be freshman Ursa Orehek (Domzale, Slovenia), who had a nice tournament back from injury after having not played since the Florida Challenge in January. Orehek finished the Gator Invite one shot shy of a season-best total for 54 holes (227) and seemed to get stronger as the tournament went on. Now fully healthy, Orehek gives the Gators plenty of depth this weekend.

 

“I think the girls are doing a great job of just getting involved in the process,” Bastel said. “We break each tournament down into its littlest parts. Each tournament we go day-by-day, and then round-by-round, finally hole-by-hole. We want to get involved in those small things that we can control, when we do that well, the results are usually good. That’s what we work on, just as much as the all the physical things that we work on and how we mentally are going to approach each tournament. We’ve stuck to that game place since the Cougar Classic in the fall and have carried it over all season.”

 

This weekend’s tournament is set to begin tomorrow with the first tee times listed at 8:20 a.m. The first Florida player will tee off at 9:05 a.m. on the tenth hole. Live scoring will be available on GofStat.com and a full recap with complete results will be posted on GatorZone.com following each day’s play.

 

For complete coverage of UF’s women’s golf program visit GatorZone.com, follow @GatorZoneGolf on Twitter and ‘like’ the University of Florida Women’s Golf page on Facebook.

 

 

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