July 8, 2009
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Incoming freshman Ashleigh Albrecht is set to compete in the 64th U.S. Women’s Open Championship this week at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem, Pa. Albrecht secured a tournament berth June 11 in the U.S. Women’s Open Sectional Qualifying rounds at Carolina Trace Country Club in Sanford, N.C.
“It is an exciting step forward for our program to have an incoming freshman earn an opportunity to play in the U.S. Open,” head coach Myra Blackwelder said. “This will be a wonderful experience for Ashleigh and it is great preparation for SEC golf. The U.S. Open is the ultimate test in women’s golf and she will benefit by being exposed to a new level of play.”
In the two-round qualifier, the Murrieta, Calif., native carded a 2-over-par 146. Posting a 76 in the first round, Albrecht finished the second round with a tournament-low 70.
Albrecht was tied with Haley Stephens and Haley Wilson at 146 after 36 holes of regulation, forcing the trio into a one-hole playoff to decide who would receive the sectional’s final qualifying spot. Replaying the par five 18th hole, Albrecht reached the green in two strokes, leaving a three-foot putt. She clinched the final position after sinking the putt for an eagle.
Making her U.S. Open debut, Albrecht tees off Thursday at 2:42 p.m. in the day’s final group with Libby Smith and Jessica Carafiello. The tournament is set to take place on Saucon Valley’s par 71 Old Course.
Albrecht, a recent graduate of Murrieta Valley High School, brings the vast experience of a multiple-sport athlete with a successful junior golfing career to the 2009-10 Wildcat season. In January, Albrecht won the PGA West Mid-Season Championship at Laquinta, Calif., and as a result was invited to represent Team USA in the Euro Cup Team Matches in Scotland and the Mizuno Cup in Canada.
Johnson Reaches Quarterfinals in Women’s Western National Amateur Championship
LIMA, Ohio — At the 2009 Women’s Western Amateur held at Shawnee Country Club in Lima, Ohio, incoming freshman Betsie Johnson advanced to the quarterfinals of the Championship Flight where she was defeated by Taylore Karle 5 and 4.
Johnson carded a 159 (80, 79) in the qualifying rounds to earn a position in the Championship Flight. In the opening round of match play, Johnson defeated Anne Ormson in 19 holes, advancing her to the round of 16 where she defeated Laura Nochta 2 and 1.
A native of Nicholasville, Ky., Johnson comes to Kentucky as one of the Bluegrass’ premier golfers. She qualified for the United States Golf Association Girls’ Championship in 2007 and 2008, and made back-to-back appearances at the Gene Hilen Invitational where she claimed top honors in 2007 and second place 2008. Other accomplishments include victories at the Kentucky Junior Amateur Championship in 2007 and the 2008 Notre Dame Academy Panda Invitational.
Lott Takes Second at Louisiana Women’s Golf Association State Amateur Championship
KINDER, La. — Heather Lott, an incoming freshman to the Kentucky golf team, claimed second place at the 2009 LWGA State Amateur Championship June 17 at Koasati Pines in Kinder, La. Lott dropped the final match in the Championship Flight to Sara Davison 6 and 5.
The match play tournament, held June 14-17, fielded 64 golfers from across Louisiana.
Lott, a native of Baton Rouge, La., joins the Wildcats from St. Joseph’s Academy. She brings a number of top finishes to the team, which includes 2008 victories at the PGA Junior Series at Kearney Hill Links, Louisiana State Junior Tournament, TJGT Red River Challenge Invitational, Kelly Love Showcase and Tournament of Champions in Gulf Shores, Ala.
Blackwelder Receives Academic All-America Honors
LEXINGTON, Ky. — Recent graduate Mallory Blackwelder has been selected first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America in the at-large category, as announced by the College Sports Information Directors Association. She was also named to the National Golf Coaches Association Division I All-American Scholar Team.
The NGCA recognized 410 golfers from Division I, II and III with the prestigious honor. The criteria for selection to the All-American Scholar Team are some of the most stringent of all collegiate athletics. The minimum cumulative GPA is 3.50 and student-athletes must have competed in at least 50 percent of the college’s regularly scheduled competitive rounds during the year.
Blackwelder, a native of Versailles, Ky., was also named the Southeastern Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year in April. Her freshman season, Blackwelder was named to the SEC Freshman Academic Honor Roll and first team All-American. Additionally, she earned a spot on the SEC Academic Honor Roll in 2007, 2008 and 2009. She graduated in May with a 4.0 GPA and a degree in marketing. Blackwelder participated in every tournament this past year and finished the season with a team-low 75.52 stroke average. She led the Wildcats to a victory at the UTC Lady Mocs Tournament, taking the event’s individual title with a 77.