Armstrong's Birch, UNCP's Moore Qualify for National Championships
Armstrong Atlantic State's Jenna Birch and UNC Pembroke's Meghan Moore both qualified as individuals for the NCAA National Championships in Louisville, Ky., as the South Regional came to a close on Tuesday. The two players will be the first Peach Belt women's golfers to ever play in the national championships as both were among the top three individuals in the regional not part of an advancing team. Birch won her spot in a playoff, holing a chip from 18 feet away.
Birch and Moore will play in the NCAA National Championship from May 16-19 at Persimmon Ridge Golf Club in Louisville. The event is part of the NCAA Spring Sports festival.
After carding a final-round 76 to finish tied for seventh individually with a three-day seven-over-par 223 total, Birch went to a one-hole playoff against Rollins' Kayla Sciupider for the third and final individual qualifying spot. Playing hole No. 1, Birch's approach over a greenside bunker left her an 18-foot chip to the hole. Sciupider played her second shot out of the bunker right of the green, and her third shot left her short of the hole. Birch then chipped in for birdie to win the playoff hole and earn the berth.
Moore (77-70-69/216) offset a pair of bogies with five birdies in registering a career-best 3-under-par 69 that put her just four strokes off the pace set by tournament champion Lilliana Camisa (-6) of Nova Southeastern. Shauna Walor (82-77-77/236) booked a 5-over-par 77 for the second-straight round to jump up seven spots on the individual leaderboard into a tie for 26th place. Jenn Crow (82-82-82/246) and Kelly Sumner (85-77-84/246) both finished in a tie for 43rd place, while Lizzie Bundy (80-83-85/248) finished one spot back in 45th place.
The three-day run gives Moore the honor of the first women's golfer from UNCP to qualify for the NCAA Championships. Moore, who now boasts the highest finish for a PBC golfer in the NCAA Super Regional round, will be joined at the NCAA Championships by Armstrong Atlantic's Jenna Birch who grabbed the final individual qualifying spot by virtue of a playoff with Rollins' Kayla Sciupider. Saint Leo's Goeun Lee also qualified as an individual for the national championship round.
Second-ranked Florida Southern blew away the rest of the field for the third-straight day and captured the team title by 12 strokes over the rest of the field. With the team title safely in hand, the Mocs advance to the NCAA National Championship round and will be joined by top-ranked Nova Southeastern and Barry who concluded the event in second and third place, respectively.
1. No. 2 Florida Southern 302-296-304/902 +38
2. No. 1 Nova Southeastern 308-300-306/914 +50
3. No. 8 Barry 305-300-317/922 +58
4. No. 13 St. Leo 308-309-307/924 +60
5. No. 3 Lynn 303-311-312/926 +62
6. No. 21 Tusculum 310-314-304/928 +64
T7. No. 9 Newberry 317-309-303/929 +65
T7. No. 6 Rollins 312-308-309/929 +65
9. No. 11 UNC Pembroke 312-306-312/939 +75
2. Meghan Moore 77-70-69/216
T26. Shauna Walor 82-77-77/236
T43. Jenn Crow 82-82-82/246
T43. Kelly Sumner 85-77-84/246
45. Lizzie Bundy 80-83-85/248
OTHER PBC INDIVIDUAL SCORES
T7. Jenna Birch (AASU) 75-72-76/223 +7
T21. Kimesha Anthony (CSU) 75-80-77/232 +16