SAINT GEORGE, UT (March 18, 2017) -- There haven't been many days better on the golf course for a collegiate player. On Friday in the final round of the Pizza Hut Lady Thunderbird Invitational Gonzaga sophomore Bianca Pagdanganan shot an NCAA record tying 61. With her record matching round Pagdanganan tied the mark previously set by Colorado's Esther Lee and Stanford's Mariah Stackhouse.
Last year Pagdanganan, who became the first Bulldog to play in the NCAA championship, got her round started with birdies on each of the first two holes thus setting the stage for her day. After carding one more birdie on the front side, Pagdanganan turned in 3-under 33 before really catching fire on the homeward nine.
On the backside Pagdanganan birdied the 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 15th and 18th holes but by far the highlight of the round came in the form of a hole-in-one on the the 162 yard par-3 17th.
“After making birdie on the 16th, which is the hardest hole on the course, she hit a nine iron just past the hole that backed up into the hole,” Gonzaga head coach Brad Rickel said of the ace. “We couldn’t see it go in, but the crowd went crazy and it took us a minute to realize it went in.”
Of course as one would imagine the huge day for Pagdanganan vaulted her to the top of the leaderboard and a medalist title. With her 11-under 61 in the final round Pagdanganan finished 14-under overall and as an eight-stroke winner.
The round was also a West Coast Conference, school, tournament, and course record.
-Gonzaga Athletics contributed to this story