Medalist winner Monica Vaughn of Arizona State (ASU Photo)
LUBBOCK, TX (May 10, 2017) - The Lubbock Regional was all about Arizona State. Coming in as the No. 3 seed the Sun Devils made a resounding statement to the rest of the nation by finishing 22-under-par and 21 shots in front of runner-up Furman to win in wire-to-wire fashion. With the win Arizona State has captured their first regional title since 2009 and they are headed back to the NCAA Championship for the first time since 2014.
ASU was so impressive this week that they took the top-three spots in the individual standings, led by medalist Monica Vaughn who finished 8-under and a shot in front of Olivia Mehaffey. The victory made Vaughn the first medalist winner since Noemi Jimenez in 2014 and the program's seventh all-time regional round medalist.
Vaughn, who led from start to finish, played a bogey-free front nine 4-under 32 to move to 9-under before holding on for the title on the second nine. The birdies for Vaughn came on the first two holes, the 7th and 8th holes while the lone bogey was carded on No. 14.
Olivia Mehaffey shot the round of the day, a 6-under 66, to finish 7-under and in second place. Mehaffey was an afterthought in the medalist race until she birdied Nos. 5-9 in succession and then the 11th and 16th holes as well to reach 8-under and tie for the lead. However, the tie would be short lived as Mehaffey dropped her only shot of the round on the final hole.
The Arizona State top-three was rounded out by Linnea Strom who finished third with a 6-under showing. Strom was 5-under during her final round with eight birdie and three bogeys.
"I'm at a loss for words; I'm just so excited for this team and it's a huge win for our program," said head coach Missy Farr-Kaye. "We haven't won regionals since 2009 and to go 1-2-3 individually in a very good field on a very difficult golf course is incredible."
The top-five of the individual standings also included Pimnipa Panthong (Kent State) in fourth at 5-under and Natalie Srinivasan (Furman); Haylee Harford (Furman) in fifth at 5-under.
From each regional six teams will advance to the NCAA Championships.
Outside of Arizona State the teams advancing are second place Furman (-1), 2016 NCAA Championship semifinalist Oregon (+2) was third, Texas (+5) took fourth, in fifth it was host and No. 9 Texas Tech (+9) while Kent State (+11) took sixth.
In the surprise of the regional round top-seed UCLA missed the cut and will not advance to the NCAA Championship. UCLA ended up 17-over and in eighth place. What was even more surprising was no Bruin placed inside the top-10 and Lilia Vu who had won four straight events coming in finished tied for 13th after leading following the first round.
In addition to the teams moving on, the top-three individuals not on a qualifying team advanced to the NCAA Championship. The group includes Julienne Soo (Oklahoma), Alex White (BYU) and Susie Cavanagh (Oregon State).
-Arizona State athletics contributed to this story
ABOUT THE NCAA Women's South Regional
54 hole women's NCAA Regional from which the low
teams advance to the NCAA Championship.
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