March 26, 2014
LAHAINA, Hawaii - Betty Chencontinued her standout sophomore season for the No. 37 UC Davis women's golf team on Wednesday, shooting a 1-under 71 to take second while leading the Aggies to a strong third-place finish at the Anuenue Spring Break Classic on Maui.
Freshman Paige Leecontinues to impress as well, tying for sixth while posting her second-straight top-10 finish and fourth of the year.
UC Davis fired an 8-over 296 team score for the second consecutive day while totaling 26 over for the three-day event. The third-place performance is its third top-three showing in four tournaments this spring after runner-up placings at Stanford and San Jose State.
The only teams to finish in front of the Aggies this week were ranked higher than them. Fifteenth-ranked Pepperdine (+6) won the 15-team tournament while No. 10 Washington (+15) took second. The only other top-50 team was No. 49 Colorado and the Buffaloes (+45) took seventh. UC Davis also beat Big West members Long Beach State (10th, +53), Cal Poly (11th, +57) and UC Riverside (+69).
The Aggies' Beverly Vatananugulkit shot a 77 in the final round and tied for 29th at 13 over, Andrea Wong was 15 over and tied for 37th after her round of 76, and Blair Lewis shot 79 to tie for 65th at 22 over.
"Competing today was a great opportunity for us to learn about what we need to do to compete with the top teams in the country," said head coach Anna Temple. "In a lot of areas we are right there, however there are a few things we need to improve on to see greater success. Betty played beautifully and finishing a tournament under par is always meaningful.
"Paige really stepped up and was committed to her game plan throughout the rounds," she added. "It will be exciting to see who steps up in our next event at Arizona State. It is a tremendous field and I know everyone is looking forward to getting some good work in before we compete again next week."
Pepperdine's Grace Na, ranked 27th nationally, fired a tournament-record 11-under 205 to successfully defend her individual title.
Chen shot in the red for the second time this week, picking up two birdies on each side of The Bay Course. She birdied the par-4 second and ninth holes and then did the same to the par-5 10th and 18th holes to help her cause.
For Chen, it was her third top-10 finish of the spring, joining eight- and fourth-place finishes at Stanford and UC Irvine, respectively. She has four top-10 placings this season, including a first at the Hoosier Fall Invitational at Indiana.
Lee's even round was her best of the tournament and was fueled by four birdies including two on the front nine and two more on the back. She was 2 over at her turn but birdied the par-3 12th hole and the par-5 15th to shoot 2 under on the final nine holes.
Lee was fifth at the Juli Inkster Spartan Invitational at San Jose State in her last tournament and had two top-six showings in the fall.
Vatananugulkit's 29th-place finish was her second-best of the spring and was highlighted by a 2-over 39 on the back nine on Wednesday. She picked up her lone birdie on the par-4 14th.
Wong's 76 matched her best score this week and featured two birdies including one on her opening hole, the par-3 third. Lewis had two birdies over a three-hole span in her final round and covered the course's first nine holes just a shot over par.
UC Davis will try to keep the momentum going when it travels for the PING/ASU Invitational in Tempe, Ariz. It'll be the final event before the Aggies try to win their fifth straight Big West Championship in mid-April.
The tournament was hosted by the University of Hawaii.
ANUENUE SPRING BREAK CLASSIC
Lahaina, Hawaii (hosted by Hawaii)
The Bay Course
Par 72, 6,022 yards
TEAM 1. Pepperdine, 290-287-293-870
2. Washington, 290-299-879
3. UC DAVIS, 298-296-296-890
4. San Jose State, 296-307-296-899
5. Mississippi, 303-302-299-904
6. Santa Clara, 301-301-306-988
7. Colorado, 301-303-305-909
8. Fresno State, 308-306-296-910
9. Oregon State, 307-303-306-916
10. Long Beach State, 309-306-302-917
11. Cal Poly, 317-306-298-921
12. Hawaii, 307-308-309-924
13. UC Riverside, 316-316-301-933
14. Nevada, 320-313-302-935
15. Seattle, 318-307-312-937
1. Grace Na, Pepperdine, 70-66-69-205