Women's Golf
Laney Frye Concludes 2023 SEC Championship in a Tie for Sixth Place

Laney Frye Concludes 2023 SEC Championship in a Tie for Sixth Place

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Laney Frye, a junior from Lexington, Kentucky, had an impressive run at the 2023 Southeastern Conference Women’s Golf Championship at Greystone Golf and Country Club in Birmingham, Alabama. The Wildcat, who several times held a lead at the tournament, finished in a tie for sixth place on a 1-over-par 217.

Despite her success, the University of Kentucky women’s golf team couldn’t put the pieces together to eclipse the top eight down the stretch. The Wildcats shot 16-over in the final round of stroke play, combining for a 41-over-par 905 tournament total to finish tied for 11th place.

“It was not the week we wanted to have here in Birmingham,” said head coach Golda Borst. “I felt like we were prepared to play coming into the week, but the course got the best of us and we did not execute down the stretch. We will regroup and start to prepare for the NCAA Tournament.”

It took a 30-over to make the cut, with the top eight teams advancing to the quarterfinals of match play Saturday. The third-ranked team in the nation, LSU topped the team leaderboard at the end of 54 holes on a 6-over. No. 7 Auburn finished runner-up at 17-over, while No. 10 Texas A&M came in third place at 21-over.

Frye paced UK’s lineup though the last 36 holes, stringing together scores of 70, 74 and 73 during the conference championship. Her 2-under in the first round helped her improve her own school record of most par-or-better rounds in a single season to 17. While her scorecard helped her earn her sixth finish inside the top-10 this season, which leads the team, it also became her best tournament total and finish in her three appearances at the SEC Championship.

The Wildcat tied for third in birdies made this week, knocking in 10, including a trio of them in her final round.

Just five players finished ahead of the junior, with the Julia Lopez Ramirez of Mississippi State topping the individual leaderboard at 4-under on the tournament to win medalist honors.

For the first time this week, María Villanueva Aperribay couldn’t convert for a birdie on the front nine. Despite making the turn 3-over on the round, she immediately began to chip away at her deficit thanks to a birdie, at last, on the par-4 No. 10, a hole that she doubled earlier in the week. She followed up with two straight pars, but a double and a bogey on Nos. 13 and 14 set her back even more. The senior finished off her round with a solid par-birdie-par-par stretch to go just 4-over Friday. She concluded the tournament in a tie for 30th place, turning in an 11-over-par 227.

Ivy Shepherd also recorded a 4-over in the final round, going +2 on the front nine and +2 on the back nine, logging a birdie, a bogey and a double on each side of the course. The graduate transfer capped her first and her final SEC Championship with a birdie on the par-5 No. 18. Shepherd, who was at one point tied for the lead at the tournament, finished in a tie for 35th place on a 12-over-par 228 scorecard.

Despite Jensen Castle collecting her first birdie of the tournament in the final round, she shot a 7-over-par 79 Friday. Her lone birdie of the tournament came on a 10-foot putt at the par-3 No. 8. Castle, a senior from West Columbia, South Carolina, came in 64th place on a 22-over-par 238.

Marissa Wenzler looked to have her best round of the tournament yet, going even par through the first seven holes and just 1-over at the turn. She ran into some trouble on the back nine though, recording a trio of bogeys and a triple on the par-4 No. 15. The senior recorded a 7-over-par 79 in the final round, while she finished in 65th place on a 23-over-par 239 tournament total.

The Wildcat will await their NCAA Regional assignment, which will be hosted May 8-10 at one of six regional sites around the country. Those sites include Athens, Georgia; Palm Beach Gardens, Florida; Pullman, Washington; Raleigh, North Carolina; San Antonio, Texas; and Westfield, Indiana.

The top five teams from each regional will advance to the 2023 NCAA Women’s Golf Championship at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona, May 20-25.

T5 Laney Frye 70, 74, 73 … 217 (+1)
T30 María Villanueva Aperribay 76, 75, 76 … 227 (+11)
T35 Ivy Shepherd 69, 83, 76 … 228 (+12)
64 Jensen Castle 79, 80, 79 … 238 (+22)
65 Marissa Wenzler 82, 78, 79 … 239 (+23)

For the latest on the Kentucky women’s golf team, follow the team on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, as well as on the web at UKathletics.com.

Related Stories

View all