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March 12, 2009

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina’s women’s golf team will return from nearly a month’s hiatus as the Gamecocks travel to Baton Rouge, La., for the LSU Golf Classic at the University Club. The tournament runs Fri., March 13, through Sun., March 15.

The Gamecock women, currently ranked 46th in the country by Golfweek, look to improve on their previous outing where they carded an 11th-place finish at the Central District Invitational in Tampa, Fla.

It will be a slightly different lineup for the South Carolina women this weekend on the Bayou. Regulars Benedicte Toumpsin, Katie Burnett, Meredith Taylor and Taylor Barrett will again be in the lineup, and freshman Cayci Ruppe will play her first varsity tournament as part of the Gamecock team. Ruppe previously competed as an individual at the Derby Invitational in October. In addition, freshman Taylor Weaver will compete in her first collegiate tournament, playing as an individual.

Toumpsin enters the weekend as the team’s top player, carrying a 74.73 stroke average through five tournaments on the year. She has turned in the best Carolina finish in two of the previous three tournaments, earning a tie for 20th at the Central District Invitational and a tie for 19th at the Mercedes-Benz Championships in Knoxville, Tenn., back in October.

A large and talented field descends on Baton Rouge this weekend with 18 teams competing in the event, including half of the Southeastern Conference and 15 schools ranked in the Golfweek Top 50. Leading the field is No. 4 Virginia, followed by No. 7 Wake Forest, No. 11 LSU, No. 15 North Carolina No. 19 Louisville, No. 22 Arkansas, No. 26 Notre Dame, No. 31 TCU, No. 37 NC State, No. 39 Mississippi, No. 40 Colorado, No. 44 Furman, No. 45 Tulane, No. 47 Kentucky and No. 50 College of Charleston. Also competing will be Mississippi State and UNC Wilmington.

South Carolina is paired with Tulane and Mississippi State and will go off in the second group of tee times from the No. 10 tee on Friday morning, beginning at 8:45 a.m. Central time. Weaver, playing as an individual, will have a much earlier wake-up call as her group will be the first on the course at 7:51 a.m. Central time.

Live results can be obtained through for all three rounds of the tournament.

CAROLINA TEE TIMES (No. 10 Tee, all times Central)
*Taylor Weaver – 7:51 a.m.
Cayci Ruppe – 8:45 a.m.
Taylor Barrett – 8:54 a.m.
Meredith Taylor – 9:03 a.m.
Katie Burnett – 9:12 a.m.
Benedicte Toumpsin – 9:21 a.m.
*Playing as an individual