Cayetana Fernandez leads SEC Championships as Texas A&M attempts to defend title
Cayetana Fernandez Garcia-Poggio (ANWA Photo)
Cayetana Fernandez Garcia-Poggio (ANWA Photo)

As Texas A&M looks to defend its 2023 SEC championship title at Pelican Golf Club in Belleair, Fla., Cayetana Fernandez of Texas A&M leads the individual competition by one shot after the first round. 

South Carolina leads the field, shooting a 5-under 275 to go four shots up on Texas A&M and Auburn early in the championship. The Aggies and Tigers are T2 at 1-under. 

Mississippi State, the 2023 runner-up, is in solo fourth place at even par, and Arkansas is in solo fifth place at 2-over. LSU is in solo sixth at 5-over, and Kentucky and Ole Miss are T7 at 6-over.

The Aggies defeated Mississippi State last season to win the 2023 SEC Women's Championships.

Texas A&M downs Mississippi State in a thriller to win the SEC Women's Championships

In the individual competition, Cayetana Fernandez leads the talented field by a narrow margin, shooting a first-round 4-under 66 with seven birdies and three bogeys. She was 1-under through the first 12 holes, but birdies on holes No. 13, 16, and 17 got Fernandez to 4-under and gave her the solo lead on the leaderboard.

The freshman Fernandez has had an impressive season thus far and is currently ranked No. 15 in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com Women's Rankings. She is coming off a T20 finish at the Augusta National Women's Amateur and finished in solo second place at the Women's World Amateur Team Championships

Kendall Todd of Arkansas, Hannah Darling of South Carolina, and Julia Lopez Ramirez of Mississippi State are all T2 at 3-under and just one shot back of Fernandez. Six golfers are T6 at 2-under, including the No. 1 ranked golfer in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com Women's Rankings, Ingrid Lindblad, and seven golfers are T12 at 1-under.

It is a tight leaderboard through 18 holes, with 22 golfers within four shots of the lead.

The field will play 36 more holes of stroke play on Saturday and Sunday to decide the top eight teams that will advance to match play. The quarterfinal match will be played on Monday morning, with the semifinals immediately after. It will be streamed on SECN+ at 3 p.m. The championship match on Tuesday will be broadcast on SEC Network at 9 a.m. 

Results: SEC Women's Championship
1SpainJulia Lopez RamirezSpain80067-68-65=200
2SwedenLouise RydqvistSweden50068-70-65=203
3KYLaney FryeLexington, KY40068-69-67=204
4CAAnna DavisSpring Valley, CA40069-69-68=206
5SwedenIngrid LindbladSweden40068-69-70=207

View full results for SEC Women's Championship

ABOUT THE SEC Women's Championship

54-hole stroke play tournament crowns an individual champion, then four teams advance to match play to determine the SEC team champion.

View Complete Tournament Information

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