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May 17, 2010

Tournament Notes in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader | Live Scoring | Tournament Central

WILMINGTON, N.C. – Following one of the most impressive performances in program history, the South Carolina women’s golf team will compete for the NCAA Championship this week at the Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C. The 72-hole championship will be contested Tuesday through Friday on the par 72, 6,368-yard Dye Course as the Gamecocks will join 23 other teams and six individuals in vying for the national title.

The five competitors for the Gamecocks in the championship will be seniors Corrine Carr, Taylor Barrett and Benedicte Toumpsin, sophomore Katie Burnett, and freshman Amanda Strang. The Carolina lineup remains the same for the championship as it has been for every full-field event of the spring season.

It will be a new experience for most of the Gamecock roster as only two Carolina seniors have competed in the national championship tournament before. Toumpsin and Barrett both played in the 2008 event in Albuquerque, N.M., with the Gamecocks finishing 22nd in the 24-team field. Toumpsin, who won the East Regional medalist title two weeks prior, tied for 48th place, while Barrett tied for 122nd.

Burnett and Carr, however, showed that lack of postseason experience is no deterrent to success. Burnett was the medalist at the NCAA East Regional, leading the Gamecocks to the team title and a berth in this week’s championship with a 54-hole total of 210 (-6) to earn her first collegiate victory. Carr tied for 13th place to earn her second top-20 finish at a regional and help pave her way into the NCAA Championship for the first time. Not to be overlooked, Strang’s first and third rounds of 70 and 73, respectively, were major contributors to the team effort as she finished in a tie for 39th place.

South Carolina is making its 10th overall appearance in an NCAA Women’s Golf Championship and their second in three seasons. The last appearance in 2008 resulted in a 22nd-place finish in Albuquerque, N.M., with a team score of 306-316-310-303=1235 from Camila Mori, Toumpsin, Blythe Worley, Whitney Simons and Barrett. In nine previous appearances, the best team showing came at the 1995 championship when a pair of top-20 individual performances from Siew-Ai Lim and Clarissa Childs led South Carolina to a tie for ninth place at the site of this year’s event, the Dye Course at the Country Club of Landfall. Lim is the most decorated individual in Gamecock NCAA Championship history with a tie for 9th in 1995 and a tie for sixth place the following year. She is also the only Gamecock to have played in an NCAA Championship each of her four seasons.

The Dye Course at the Country Club of Landfall was opened for play in November 1987. Its 18-hole layout was designed by Pete Dye, one of the greatest golf cours architects of the 20th century, who was awarded an honorary doctorate and an honorary varsity letter by the University of South Carolina in 2008. Dye designed six of the top 18 “Top 100 Courses You Can Play” and four of the “Greatest Courses in the United States” as ranked by Golf Magazine. Dye used Bermuda fairways and roughs paired with Bentgrass greens. The Dye Course also features freshwater lakes and dramatic views of the Intracoastal Waterway.

With the NCAA Championship comes an opportunity to face some of the best teams in the nation. Nine of the top 10 teams in the country as ranked by Golfweek advanced from the regional round, as did 17 of the top 25. UCLA, Arizona State, Southern California, Arizona, Auburn, Alabama, Purdue, Duke and Pepperdine lead the way, followed by Virginia, Tennessee and Stanford at 11 through 13, respectively. Vanderbilt is ranked 18th, followed by No. 20 New Mexico, No. 22 Florida State, No. 23 Texas A&M and No. 25 TCU. The Gamecocks come in at No. 26 overall.

South Carolina will be paired with Southern California and Arizona – the champions of the Central and West regionals, respectively – for the first two rounds of the tournament. The Gamecocks, Trojans and Wildcats will begin their at 12:20 p.m. Tuesday on the No. 1 tee and at 8 a.m. Wednesday on hole No. 1. Live scoring throughout the tournament will be available through, and fans can receive periodic updates via Twitter by following @GamecockWGolf.