Illini Finish Fifth at Big Ten Championships
April 27, 2014
French Lick, Ind. - The Illinois women’s golf team concluded the Big Ten Championships on Sunday with a final round score of 301 (+13) to secure a fifth place finish, tying their highest finish in the past 12 years (5th in both 2012 and 2002). The Orange and Blue recorded a tournament total of 913 (+49), edging out No.49 Wisconsin by one stroke. The Big Ten Championships featured a full field of 12 teams and was played out over a three-day stretch from April 25 through April 27 at the par-72, 6,017 Pete Dye Golf Course at French Lick, Ind.
“It was a solid day,” said Illinois head coach Renee Slone. “We got off to a slow start but got things going in the middle and were able to hold on to our position. All in all, it was a solid tournament and I am very proud of how the team came back after the first day. It was a rough start to the tournament and they really fought hard the whole way and with yesterday’s round were able to get right back into the mix of things."
Ember Schuldt's last Big Ten Championships resulted in a sixth place showing with a final total of 225 (+9). It marked the senior's highest finish at the conference tournament. Schuld produced a 75 (+3) final round today and tied for the third most birdies throughout the three day tournament with nine.
“I’m very happy for Ember on her last Big Ten Tournament finish,” said Slone. “She had a little bit of a rough start early in the day today but was able to work through that and had three birdies in a row”.
Emily Joers led the way for the Illini on Sunday, carding a 74 (+2). The freshman had two birdies and produced identical +1 front and back nine scores. Following closely behind and tying Schuldt's 75 was Erin Ahern, who tallied two birdies and shot even par on the back nine.
Freshman Stephanie Miller and redshirt junior Jacqueline Calamaro tied for the fourth best score for the Illini after shooting a 77 (+5) on the day. Lastly, redshirt junior Samantha Postillion rounded out the scorecard with a 79 (+7).
No. 25 Michigan State and No.27 Ohio State ended the day tied for first place with a final tournament score of 895 (+31). Since there is no playoff, both teams were crowned Big Ten Champions. No.19 Northwestern came in third carding a tournament total of 905 (+41) while Penn State took fourth with a total of 912 (+48). The Fighting Illini, who came in fifth, improved their final standings by seven places from last years finish.
Along with their first place team finish, the Buckeyes of Ohio State also had the top two finishers in the individual field. Jessica Porvasnik and Zoe-Beth Brake came in first and second with tournament total scores of 216 (E) and 219 (+3), respectively. Hana Lee of Northwestern took third place with a score of 220 (+4) and was followed closely behind by Brooke Ferrell of Wisconsin who carded a 221 (+5).
NCAA Regional selections will be announced on Monday, April 28. If selected as an at-large team, Illinois will compete at regionals from May 8-10.