BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A nearly perfect round by senior Maria Fassi and great play from Dylan Kim, Kaylee Benton, Brooke Matthews, and Ximena Gonzalez moved the sixth-ranked University of Arkansas women’s golf team into third place in round two of the Southeastern Conference Championship in Birmingham, Alabama, on Thursday.
Fassi played 4-under on the Legends Course at Greystone Golf and Country Club shooting a 68 and is currently in second place with rounds of 71-68=139. She trails the leader by just two shots going into the final round of stroke play on Friday.
Kim and Matthews bettered their first-round scores with rounds of 72 and 74, respectively. Benton added a 1-over 73 helping the Razorbacks to a 287 and up one spot to third place on the leaderboard.
Fassi started and ended her round with birdies and had just one bogey on the day. She also birdied holes five, six and 11. She was one of three Razorbacks to count a four on the par-5 18th hole with Benton and Kim also carding birdies to finish. Benton (72-73) and Kim (73-72) are T15 overall with 1-over 145s.
Matthews made the turn and birdied the 10th and 11th holes erasing a double bogey on the front nine. She parred five of the last seven holes for a 74, three shots better than her first-day number. She and Gonzalez are T50 overall.
The windy conditions increased throughout the round and overnight wind and rain are expected. Arkansas is currently scheduled to begin play at 9:40 a.m. in the final round to determine the individual winner. The top eight teams advance to match play Saturday and Sunday.
From Shauna Taylor
I’m super proud of this group. It takes a team effort to have success on this golf course. I’m really proud of Brooke (Matthews). She doubled her second hole and finished 2-over. Obviously (Maria) Fassi had a fantastic round and Dylan (Kim) told me she had 24 putts, so she battled hard today. It really says a lot about our group. We are just trying to take it one day at a time. Tonight, we are going to rest and recover. We want to fuel properly and try to pace ourselves to put ourselves in a position to challenge for a title.
About Maria Fassi
I think experience on this golf course means a lot. This is her fourth year playing here. She knows the hole locations and knows when she needs to be aggressive and when to take her medicine and hit to the middle of the greens. She’s grown so much as a player and her discipline on the golf course is amazing. Her acceptance of dealing with wherever her golf ball goes is the reason she will find herself in contention quite a bit.
The Razorback Lineup
|2||Maria Fassi (1)||71-68=139||-5|
|T15||Kaylee Benton (2)||72-73=145||+1|
|T15||Dylan Kim (3)||73-72=145||+1|
|T50||Brooke Matthews (4)||77-74=151||+7|
|T50||Ximena Gonzalez (5)||75-76=151||+7|
SEC Championship Notes
•Arkansas won the program’s first SEC title and it was the first title under the format that features match play.
•Maria Fassi tied for the individual title but lost the playoff. Fassi finished T5 as a freshman (2016), T63 as sophomore (2017) and as runner-up as a junior (2018).
•Arkansas finished third in stroke play last year and won the match play portion for the SEC title.
•The Razorbacks have 12 top-5 finishes in program history.
•Rain is expected overnight and play may be delayed in the morning for the final round of stroke play.
The University of Arkansas and Blessings Golf Club are the proud hosts of the 2019 NCAA Women’s and Men’s National Championships. The women’s event begins May 17 and is immediately followed by the men’s championship beginning May 24. For more information or to volunteer for the event, log on to www.NCAAGolf19.com.
Keep up with all of the latest news and information and get behind the scenes looks into our program on our social media accounts. Follow us on Twitter at @RazorbackWGolf and check out our Facebook page “Razorback Women’s Golf.” Stats, news and player information can be found at ArkansasRazorbacks.com.