The University of Alabama women’s golf team made quick work of Kent State to advance to the semifinals of the NCAA Championships on Tuesday morning.
The Crimson Tide will face USC, which defeated Duke. The Trojans feature a talented lineup with four freshmen and one sophomore, with Jennifer Chang posting the team’s best score in stroke play at +1.
The match-play semifinal is scheduled to start at 2:30 p.m. at Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla. (4 p.m. ET, Golf Channel). The winner will play for the national championship.
Alabama’s match was scored a 4-1 victory:
- Lauren Stephenson def. Pimnipa Panthong 3&2
- Kristen Gillman def. Michaela Finn 2&1
- Lakareber Abe lost to Karoline Stormo 2&1
- Angelica Moresco def. Chloe Salort 5&3
- Cheyenne Knight def. Kory Nielsen 4&3
The Crimson Tide led four of the five matches at the turn with Stephenson notching the first win followed by Moresco.
With an impressive putt on the 17th hole, Gillman’s victory was the one to clinch the team win.
On the other side the bracket, Stanford and Northwestern went down to the final hole before the Cardinal final won 3-2, and UCLA was upset by Arizona by the same score. On Monday, the Wildcats needed an eagle on 18 on the final hole of stroke play to force a playoff against Baylor just to reach the quarterfinals.
Alabama was ranked No. 1 in the final pre-tournament rankings, ahead of No. 3 UCLA, No. 4 Duke, No. 5 Stanford, No. 6 USC, No. 9 Arizona, No. 13 Northwestern and No. 16 Kent State.
It finished the stroke play portion of the tournament tied with UCLA at +9, but the Bruins were seeded first in the bracket on a tiebreaker. The top-seeded team after stroke play has never gone on to win the title.
With Knight finishing fourth individually, and Stephenson and Gillman tied for seventh, Alabama was the only team to have three players place in the top 10.
The three were also named first-team All-Americans by the Women’s Golf Coaches Association on Tuesday morning.