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May 11, 2002

BATON ROUGE, La. – The 21st-ranked South Carolina women’s golf team carded a 10-over 298 Saturday and by finishing in sixth place at the NCAA East Regional at the University Club has qualified for the NCAA Championships, to be held May 21-24, in Auburn, Wash. The Lady Gamecocks qualify for the second season in a row for the NCAAs, the fifth time in eight years under Coach Kristi Coggins and for the seventh time in the history of the program. Duke shot an even-par 288 and captured the regional title by 13 strokes over top-ranked Auburn.

The Lady Gamecocks began the day in sixth place and had a solid performance from their entire lineup to earn the sixth-place showing. Carolina was led again by sophomore Adrienne Gautreaux, who had a two-over 74 and finished in a tie for ninth place at two-over 218. Sophomore Marci Robinson had a 76 Saturday and finished tied for 41st place at 224. Junior Kacy Thompson had Carolina’s best round of the day at one-over 73 and finished tied for 45th place at 225, while classmate and two-time defending SEC individual champion Kristy McPherson had a 75 and finished tied for 54th place at 226. Senior Reetta Laakkonen rounded out the Carolina contingent with an 80 Saturday, tying for 70th place at 231.

In the team competition, Duke came into the day with a five-stroke lead over Florida and proceeded to widen the margin to 13 strokes in earning the title at five-under 859 for the regional. No. 1 Auburn had a four over Saturday and finished at 872, with Wake Forest (875), Florida (878) and South Florida (883) rounding out the top five. South Carolina (889), Georgia (892) and Vanderbilt (893) rounded out the top eight and all qualify for the NCAA Championships. Tulane shot a three-round 894 and missed the championships by one stroke.

Individually, Duke’s Leigh Anne Hardin shot an even-par 72 Saturday and eased to the individual title at six-under 210. Auburn’s Celeste Troche finished second at 211, with Meredith Duncan of LSU and Auburn’s Courtney Swaim tying for third place at 213. South Florida’s Jameica Duncombe and Meaghan Francella of Memphis tied for fifth place at one-under 215.

South Carolina will return to Columbia late Saturday and will prepare for the NCAAs next week before leaving Sunday, May 19, for Washington.


  6   South Carolina      298  293  298  889T 9   Adrienne Gautreaux     75   69   74  218T41       Marci Robinson     74   74   76  224T45       Kacy Thompson   78   74   73  225T54       Kristy McPherson     75   76   75  226T70       Reetta Laakkonen     74   77   80  231