Five-time defending champions, the UC Davis women’s golf team sets out to prove themselves once more as they host the 2015 Big West Championships starting Sunday, April 19. A daily high temperature of 90 degrees and a large-home crowd is expected to welcome the Aggies, who will embark on their 3-day journey starting at 7:30 AM at the El Macero Country Club just outside of Davis, California. Senior golfer Blair Lewis will hit the first ball, followed sequentially by senior Beverly Vatananugulkit, junior Betty Chen, junior Andrea Wong, and sophomore Paige Lee.
UC Davis has been dominant in Big West play, having won the last five straight Big West Championships. Still, this is the first time in history that the 24th ranked Aggies will host the annual event. Traveling to Davis to vie for the Big West title are Long Beach State, UC Riverside, CSU Fullerton, Cal Poly, Hawaii, UC Irvine, and CSU Northridge universities. Stakes are high, as the winning team moves forward to the NCAA Division I women’s regionals in May.
“I’m really excited to be at home and local,” said junior golfer Andrea Wong. “Friends who’ve never seen me play before will be able to come and watch. We love the support.”
The Aggies head to Big West having placed third in their previous tournament at the SMU/DAC Invitational held in Dallas, Texas on April 10 and April 11. Despite their now 7-top 3 performances this season, the Aggies find room for improvement going into this weekend.
“Last week in Texas, we had kind of a rough third round,” said Wong. “It was a good wake up call, and it let us know that we have things to work on. We played a decent first and second round, but having that rough third round put a fire in us a little bit to focus this week in practice.”
With just a few days away, Head Coach Anna Temple prepares the team this week with extensive short-game practice. Hitting a 72.83 average this season, Lee holds the team’s lowest average heading into the Big West. The sophomore is currently ranked as the No. 48 golfer in the country according to Golfweek. Wong has the team’s second best average with 72.92 and also ranked within the top 60 at No. 57. Fellow Aggies Chen, Lewis, and Vatananugulkit each hold 74.13, 75.42, and 75.58 averages respectively.
Watch women’s golf battle for their sixth-consecutive Big West title, April 19-21. Admission is free for all who want to attend.