EUGENE, Ore. -- The 30th-ranked Ducks return to action this week with the competitive PING/ASU Invitational, held on the ASU Karsten Golf Course in Tempe, Ariz. The tournament will tee off on 8 a.m. (PST) Friday and Saturday, and at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday.
The PING/ASU Invitational boasts a 15-team field, including 12 teams ranked in the top 40 of the latest Golfstat rankings.
Joining No. 30 Oregon in the field, in order of ranking, will be; UCLA (2), Duke (3), Oklahoma (5), Arizona State (6), South Carolina (7), Stanford (8), Arizona (9), Washington (11), Vanderbilt (12), California (34), UC Davis (39), Texas (53), Oregon State (73) and Washington State (77).
IN THE RANKINGS
The Ducks fell six spots to No. 30 in the latest Golfstat rankings, released on Monday. The Pac-12 features seven teams ranked in the top 30; USC (1), UCLA (2), Arizona State (6), Stanford (8), Arizona (9), Washington (11), and Oregon (30).
The ASU Karsten Golf Course is a par 70 track, and is a classic Pete Dye, links-style course set in the shadows of ASU’s Sun Devil Stadium. Awarded 4 1/2 stars by the prestigious Golf Digest Rating Panel, this well maintained and challenging design features Dye’s signature mounding and creative bunkering – making proper club selection essential for low scoring. Top PGA and LPGA TOUR professionals such as Phil Mickelson, Billy Mayfair, Grace Park and Anna Nordqvist have all sharpened their skills at this premier facility.
OREGON AT THE PING/ASU INVITATIONAL
The Ducks will be competing at this tournament for the 21st time in program history. UO’s top finish in the tournament came in 1997 with a fourth place showing. Last year, the Duck’s carded a three-round tally of 899 (+35) and finished 14th. Cassy Isagawa carded a 220 (+4), fueled by a two-under final round, to lead the team.
DOWN A PLAYER, UO STRUGGLES AT SDSU FARMS INVITE
Oregon improved to 14th place after the third and final round of the SDSU Farms Invitational. Limited to just four competitors, the Ducks finished with a three-round tally of 940 (+76) to finish outside the top seven of the team leaderboard for the first time this season. Head coach Ria Scott’s Ducks fired a 310 (+22) closing round at The Farms Golf Club, their lowest round of the tournament. UO entered the tournament with a 295.9 round average. Sophomore Caroline Inglis suffered a heat stroke during her practice round and was unavailable for the remaining three rounds. Freshman Marcella Pranovia led the Ducks, tying for 29th to collect her third straight top 30 individual finish. The Bali, Indonesia, native carded rounds of 73 (+1), 80 (+8) and 72 (E).
DUCKS BREAK THROUGH, TALLY FIRST TOURNEY WIN
Oregon saved its best for last at the Juli Inkster Spartan Invitational, firing an even par final round to capture its first title of the season. The Ducks placed first out of 13 teams on the Almaden Golf and Country Club with a three-round card of 876 (+12). Oregon improved after each round, carding a 296 (+8) and 292 (+4) before closing with an even par 288. The Ducks captured their 26th tournament title in program history and added their fifth tournament trophy under head coach Ria Scott. Trailing No. 35 UC Davis late in the final round, UO’s counting scorers played the final three holes at one-under par compared to two-over for UC Davis. Cathleen Santoso’s four-under (68) closing round led the charge for the Ducks, as the freshman phenom earned her first career medalist honors. The Ducks had four players place in the top 25 individually.
UO ROUND AVERAGES NEARING RECORDS
Through nine tournaments and 26 rounds, the Ducks have a team round average of 297.93. Their current round average is nearly two strokes better than a program record. Oregon currently has three individuals with lower round averages than UO’s third-best round average, set by Erica Omlid in 2011. Junior Cassy Isagawa (72.38), freshman Cathleen Santoso (73.04) and sophomore Caroline Inglis (73.6) are on pace to enter the UO top 10 charts for low season average.
OREGON IN PURSUIT OF ANOTHER NCAA APPERANCE
The Ducks are looking to advance to the NCAA Championships for the third time in the past five seasons under head coach Ria Scott. The Ducks qualified in 2013 (22nd) and 2010 (T23rd). Oregon has qualified for NCAA Regional action in each of the past four seasons, marking the program’s longest postseason streak since reaching regionals nine years in a row from 1993-2002.
SCOTT SIGNS TWO PREP STANDOUTS
The Ducks signed two prep seniors to the 2014-15 freshmen class. The Ducks received National Letters of Intent from Megan Conder (Brentwood, Calif.) and Kelsey Ulep (Rocklin, Calif.). Conder and Ulep are both prized recruits out of California and will enter the University of Oregon as freshmen next season. Both recruits are four-time MVPs on their respective high school girls’ golf teams.
NEXT TIME UP
Oregon will co-host the first annual Silverado Showdown, April 14-15, at the Silverado Resort in Napa, Calif.