April 6, 2013
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The University of Wyoming women's golf team starts the homestretch of the 2012-13 season by hosting the seventh-annual Cowgirl Classic on Monday through Wednesday at the Ocotillo Golf Resort in Chandler, Ariz.
The Cowgirls will play host to 19 teams and a total of 103 student-athletes on the par-72 course that runs a total of 6,299 yards this year. All three days will begin with a 7:30 a.m. MT start, as groups will tee off holes one and 10 in nine-minute intervals and play 18 holes each day.
"Our team is excited to represent our university and the state once again at our home event," UW head coach Josey Stender said. "The staff at Ocotillo and Troon Golf always does a wonderful job of helping us put on a first-class event and we are looking forward to that once again."
The Big 10's Iowa earned the 2012 Cowgirl Classic team title with a score of 884 (+20), while Colorado State senior Brianna Espinoza fired a tournament-record 208 (-8) for the individual title. She was one of just two competitors to finish below par in last year's tournament.
Wyoming finished 17th in the field of 24 teams in 2012 with a total of 884 (+20), but return four of the top five Cowgirls that competed in the event. UW will be paced by juniors Stacey Blunt and Emily Wood. Blunt has led Wyoming in each of its four tournaments this spring, while Wood tied with her two events ago and was just one stroke back in last week's tournament. Wood averages a team-low 78.6 strokes per round and is followed closely by Blunt's 79.4.
"It is always fun going to a venue when you are playing well and knowing that you will enjoy the course," Stender said. "That gives Emily and Stacey extra confidence going into this tournament. Both of them have come into their own from a leadership point of view, so this means more to them than it ever has."
Senior Dana Zamprelli and sophomore Samantha Stancato also return to Ocotillo for Wyoming. Zamprelli was UW's top finisher at the event last season with a 228 (+12) to tie for 32nd place, while Stancato has carded a season-low 74 (+2) twice this spring. Freshman Kathleen Kershisnik has competed in all four of UW's spring tournaments and now makes her first career appearance at Ocotillo. Sophomore Kristen Jensen and redshirt freshman Emily Woodard will compete as individuals, as they vie for a lineup spot for the upcoming Mountain West Championships on April 25-27 in Rancho Mirage, Calif.
"We've played some difficult courses and difficult fields this spring, but our Achilles heel has been our consistency," Stender said. "Every person knows that they can go out and lead this team on any given day. If they go into this tournament with that sort of mentality, then every shot matters and we can have girls step up when others struggle."
Complete results and a recap will be posted on GoWYO.com following each day, while fans can follow live results on GolfStat.com by clicking on the link above.