Women's Golf Heads to Oklahoma to Compete in Big 12 Championship

April 22, 2010

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LAWRENCE, Kan. – Following a two-week break, Kansas women’s golf is poised to compete in the 14th annual Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla., April 23-25. The event, hosted by the University of Oklahoma, is set to be played on the Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club course (par 72, 6,322 yards).

“We are excited about heading down to Norman for the weekend,” said Kansas head coach Erin O’Neil. “The course will be a good fit for the team and we are very familiar with the layout, which is always an advantage. The goal will be to take it one day at a time and work hard to the end.”

Led by Meghan Gockel, Kansas took fifth place at the event a year ago, which is the best finish Kansas has earned since the Big 12’s inception. Gockel tied for sixth-place after shooting a 230, while Sydney Wilson finished tied for 28th with a score of 238. Emily Powers chipped in a 240 as she tied for 34th. Grace Thiry and Meghna Bal each fired a 242 to tied for 41st.

Kansas will use the familiar lineup of Bal, Thiry, Jennifer Clark, Powers and Gockel for this year’s event. Powers and Gockel will be competing in their last event as Jayhawks.

“It’s hard to believe Emily and Meghan will be graduating in May and it has been an honor to have coached them these past 4 years. Both have achieved great things in their time here and helped create a new tradition for KU women’s golf,” said O’Neil. “We appreciate all the effort Emily and Meghan have put into being competitive student-athletes and there is no doubt they will go on to bigger and better things down the road. I am very proud of them and will miss them greatly.”

Powers leads the team heading into the event, averaging 75.41 strokes per round. Thiry comes in second with an average of 76.85, while Bal is averaging 77.52. Clark chips in an average of 78.52 and Gockel shoots 78.74 strokes per round.

This Kansas lineup has led the team to seven top-10 finishes this season, with five coming in the fall campaign and two coming during the spring outing. Individually, Powers has finished in the top-10 three times this year, while Bal has one top-10 finish under her belt.

Texas A&M heads into the tournament ranked number one, with Oklahoma State and Texas rounding out the top three.

Kansas is paired with 10th-ranked Oklahoma and 12th-ranked Kansas State for the first round, which is slated to begin at 8:00 am Friday. Days two and three of the event will be paired by the low three teams, while the remaining teams will be paired according to their finish on day one.