SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Coming off a successful fall season that featured two team titles and four top-5 finishes in six tournaments, the Santa Clara women's golf team will open its spring season on Monday at the 54-hole Grand Canyon Invitational. The event will be played on the 6,250-yard, par-72 Wigwam Country Club Gold Course in Litchfield, Ariz.
Teams and individuals will play 36 holes on Monday and a single 18-hole round on Tuesday. Santa Clara and Cal State Bakersfield are the only California-based schools among the 14 scheduled to compete.
"We are really excited to get our spring season underway," said head coach Krystal Kelly. "The girls have been working very hard and we hope to continue where we left off from the fall season."
The Broncos' fall season also included three individual titles with freshman Annie Freman claiming medalist honors in each of the last two events. She won the Santa Clara Colby Invitational on Oct. 22 on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff over teammate Sadie Strain and followed that with a four-shot win at the Firestone Grill Cal Poly Invitational on Oct. 29.
Junior Kaci McCartan hoisted her first individual championship trophy by winning the Boise State Fall Invitational by two shots over a quartet of players, including Freman, on Sept. 17. Meghan Shain placed seventh in the same event giving the Broncos three top-10 finishers.
As a team the Broncos captured the 10-team BSU Invitational by seven shots scoring a program-best round of 287 in the second round. They scored below 300 in all three rounds marking the first time in program history that feat was accomplished.
Freman and Strain led the Broncos to a team title at their own six-team Colby Invitational, coming from nine shots back in the second and final round to capture the trophy by one shot. Santa Clara also had fourth place finishes at the 12-team Washington State Cougar Cup on Sept. 24 and the 11-team Firestone Grill Cal Poly Invitational on Oct. 29.
Freman and McCartan, along with senior Taylor Camany, sophomore Monique Riley and junior Casey Briggs will make up the Broncos tournament roster. Briggs broke into the team lineup for the first time in 2013-14 after playing in a pair of fall events as an individual.
"We are starting to see the scores get closer, so on any given day any one of the girls could be traveling," Kelly said of her GCU Invitational lineup.
The Broncos will continue their spring season next week when they compete in the San Jose State Juli Inkster Spartan Invitational at the Almaden Golf and Country Club on Mar. 3-4. "We have a tight turnaround between GC's tournament and SJSU's tournament," Kelly said of her upcoming schedule.
Name: Grand Canyon Invitational
Dates (Site): Monday and Tuesday, Feb. 24-25 (Litchfield Park, Ariz.)
Host: Grand Canyon University
Tournament Field (14 teams): Cal State Bakersfield, Creighton, Grand Canyon, Idaho State, McNeese State, Montana State, Nebraska-Omaha, North Dakota State, Northern Arizona, Northern Kentucky, Santa Clara, Southern Utah, Utah Valley, Weber State
Details: 54-hole event. Monday's 36-hole day tees off with a shotgun start at 8:15 a.m. (PT). Tuesday's final round of 18 holes tees off with a shotgun start at 8:15 a.m.
Course: Wigwam Country Club Gold Course
Yardage/Par: 6,250 yards/Par 72
Course Number/Address: (623) 935-9414
300 East Wigwam Blvd., Litchfield, AZ 85340
Results: GolfStat.com (following each round) and santaclarabroncos.com