Baylor Women’s Golf Takes Fourth in Athens, Advances to Nationals

Posted at 8:17 PM, May 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-10 21:17:17-04

Baylor women’s golf claimed the fourth NCAA Championships berth in program history by taking fourth place at the Athens Regional. BU shot 11-over-par 299 in Wednesday’s final round, finishing at 13-over 872, 12 strokes ahead of the six-team cut to earn a Championships bid.

Baylor (+13), the No. 5 seed in the Athens Regional, joined No. 1 seed Alabama (-7), No. 3 seed Northwestern (+7), No. 14 seed Michigan State (+8), No. 10 seed Clemson (+20) and No. 9 seed North Carolina (+22) in advancing to the Championships.

No. 2 seed and Regional host Georgia (+25) was the first team out, followed by No. 8 Tennessee (+26), No. 11 Augusta (+27), No. 4 Arizona (+30), No. 16 Princeton (+33), No. 12 Auburn (+36), No. 13 Kansas State (+46), No. 7 UCF (+49), No. 6 Wake Forest (+55), No. 17 North Florida (+56), No. 15 Troy (+59) and No. 18 Quinnipiac (+114).

Baylor’s NCAA Championships berth is the fourth in program history and the third in six years under head coach Jay Goble. BU previously qualified for the Championships in 2004 (t-19th), 2012 (t-16th) and 2015 (second). The fourth-place finish in Athens was Baylor’s second-best Regional finish, trailing only the 2015 NCAA San Antonio Regional tournament title.

Big 12 Player of the Year Amy Lee shot 5-over 77 on Wednesday to finish tied for 15th place at 2-over 218. Big 12 individual champion Dylan Kim had BU’s best round of the day with a 1-over 73, and she finished tied for 17th place at 3-over 219. Maggie Beth Byers tied for 28th place at 6-over 222, while Maria Vesga and Fiona Liddell tied for 43rd place at 10-over 226. Byers carded a final-round 3-over 75, Vesga shot 2-over 74 and Liddell shot 7-over 79.


Baylor earned the fourth NCAA Championships appearance in program history – BU’s previous appearances were in 2004 (t-19th), 2012 (t-16th) and 2015 (second).

Baylor’s fourth-place finish was the second-best in an NCAA Regional in program history – the only better finish came when BU won the 2015 NCAA San Antonio Regional.

BU has now earned NCAA Championships berths in three of head coach Jay Goble’s six seasons.

BU’s 54-hole total of 13-over 877 was the second-best NCAA Tournament score in program history, trailing only the 22-under 842 at the 2015 San Antonio Regional.

Baylor finished third in the 18-team field in par-3 scoring at 16-over 3.27, fourth in par-4 scoring at 21-over 4.14 and seventh in par-5 scoring at 6-under 4.90.

Baylor’s 42 birdies tied for second-most in the tournament.

Dylan Kim tied for sixth in the 96-player field in par-5 scoring at 4-under 4.67.

Amy Lee tied for 15th in par-4 scoring at 2-over 4.07.

Maria Vesga and Lee tied for 14th in par-3 scoring at 2-over 3.17.

Kim had a team-high 10 birdies, which tied for 11th-most in the tournament.

Maggie Beth Byers and Lee each posted nine birdies, tied for 18th-most in the field.


6-over-par – Maggie Beth Byers, the lone senior on the team, returned to the lineup after missing the 2017 Big 12 Championship. She shot 6-over-par 219 for the tournament, which tied for 28th place. She counted all three rounds toward the team score, posting a 1-over 73 on Monday, a 2-over 74 on Tuesday and a 3-over 75 in Wednesday’s final round.


Head coach Jay Goble on the team’s performance …

“Awesome. Mission accomplished. That’s what we’re trying to do. Just come out here and play solid golf for three days. Today was not our best day, but mission accomplished. We did everything we needed to do. We fought hard all day and we fought hard all week, and they deserve this. It’s exciting to move on.”


Goble on the team’s strength …

“Our strength this weekend was just staying patient. This golf course is demanding in a lot of ways, especially around the greens. You need to be in the right spot and putting from the right spot. Of course we had some three putts and missed some greens short side, but we did a great job of staying underneath the hole just trying to give us an opportunity to score well.”


Sophomore Maria Vesga on Wednesday’s final round …

“It felt amazing. I feel like I was more confident today hitting the ball and putting. Definitely the pins were tough still, but it was a great day for the team. I think we’re doing really well, just a little more confidence in our games and we’ll be great.”