W. Golf Set to Compete at Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invite
Oct. 11, 2013
SAN DIEGO - The San Diego State women's golf team will participate in its third tournament of the fall early next week when it travels to the Lone Star State for the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational, Oct. 13-15, in Austin, Texas.
The three-day, 54-hole event begins Sunday for the Scarlet and Black at 9:39 a.m. CT (7:39 a.m. PT) with first-round action at the par-72, 6,143-yard University of Texas Golf Club, followed by 18 holes of play each on Monday and Tuesday. A live scoring link courtesy of BirdieFire.com will be available on www.goaztecs.com.
The 18-school field features nine teams ranked among the top 50 in the latest Golfstat ratings index, including the No. 50 Aztecs, who are set to battle the likes of UCLA (2), Arizona State (8), Iowa State (14), Tulane (17), Mississippi State (30), Tennessee (33), Denver (44) and Mountain West foe New Mexico (49). In addition, SDSU will square off against another conference rival in UNLV, along with host Texas, Furman, Miami, Princeton, SMU, TCU, Texas-San Antonio and Tulsa.
Third-year Aztec head coach Leslie Spalding will utilize the same lineup employed in the first two tournaments of the season, led by freshman sensation Sirene Blair, along with sophomores Emma Henrikson and Shannon Lubar, junior Paige Spiranac and senior Maureen Dunnagan.
Blair, who leads the squad with a 73.50 scoring average, captured Mountain West Co-Golfer of the Month honors for September after posting a pair of top-10 individual finishes in her first two events as an Aztec, including a third-place effort at the University of New Mexico's Dick McGuire Invitational, where she carded a 4-under 215 in her last outing on Sept. 21.
Meanwhile, Henrikson is averaging 74.67 strokes per round and also has a top-10 performance to her credit this season after tying for eighth with an 11-over 227 at the Minnesota Invitational on Sept. 17.
This year marks the 40th edition of the Betsy Rawls Invitational, which will be presented as a fall tournament for only the third time in its history. In 1977, the Texas Invitational was renamed to honor Betsy Rawls, a Texas graduate and one of the most prolific golfers of her day. Rawls won more than 50 tour championships between 1951 and 1975, including four U.S. Opens, and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1977.
Past tournament winners include such notables as Nancy Lopez (1976), Beth Daniel (1977), Val Skinner (1982), Jody Rosenthal (1984-85), Michiko Hattori (1988) and Annika Sorenstam (1992).
Last season, Florida's Camilla Hedberg defeated Jennifer Kirby of Alabama on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff to capture medalist honors after both golfers shot an 8-under 208 in regulation to set a new 54-hole record at the event. The Gators and Crimson Tide were also tied in the team standings at 1-under 863, but Florida was awarded the title based on the fifth individual score of the final round.
The Aztecs will be making their first visit to the state of Texas since 1999 when they posted an 18th-place finish at the NCAA West Regional Championships at Pine Forest Country Club in Houston.
Following the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invite, San Diego State will have nearly two weeks off before concluding its fall schedule at the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown, Oct. 27-29, at Stallion Mountain Golf Club.