Women's Golf Hosts Bryan National Collegiate

March 30, 2004

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    Winston-Salem, N.C. - On October 28, 1997, Wake Forest and UNC Greensboro decided to bring NCAA women's golf to the Triad. The two schools announced plans to host an annual golf tournament named the Bryan National Collegiate. The inaugural event took place on March 27-29, 1998, and was deemed an overwhelming success by everyone involved.

    Once again, the Deacons and Spartans will team up to host the seventh annual Bryan National Collegiate, to be held April 2-4, 2004. The 54-hole tournament will once again be played at the Bryan Park Champions Course in Browns Summit, N.C.

    This year's field consists of 18 teams, ten of which placed in the top 17 of the NCAA Championships last May. Duke will look to win the Bryan National for the fourth straight year. The rest of the field includes Auburn, Florida, Furman, Georgia, Louisville, NC State, North Carolina, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Purdue, South Carolina, Tennessee, UNC Greensboro, Tulane, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Wake Forest.

    "We are again pleased to have an extremely strong field for the Bryan National Collegiate," Wake Forest head coach Dianne Dailey said. "This spring, fans will have the opportunity to watch five of the top ten ranked teams, including number one Duke. In addition, they can also see Liz Janangelo, the number one ranked collegiate player, as well as defending U.S. Amateur Champion Virada Nirapathpongporn. Most of the top teams in the East will be competing and the tournament will be a good preview for the NCAA East Regional. It should be a very exciting weekend."

    Last year's champion was Wake Forest's own Nuria Clau who won with a two-day total of 142. Three other players were tied for the lead, but the final 18 holes on Sunday were rained out. As a result, a scorecard playoff determined that Clau was the individual medalist.

    The Deacons have enjoyed team success in the tournament as well, winning the 2000 edition by five strokes over the Indiana Hoosiers. Wake Forest opened up the tournament by shooting a seven-over par 295, the only team to break 300 in the first round. The Deacons shot a 13-over par 301 in the second round. Wake entered the final round three strokes behind Indiana but rallied in the final 18 holes to beat the Hoosiers by five strokes with an 896 total.

    "When we won in 2000, it was really exciting for us," Dailey recalled. "To be able to win a tournament that we host is good. Every time we go into a tournament we want to win, but that one was particularly good because we were co-hosting the tournament. A lot of times that doesn't happen. If we win it this year, that would really set us apart and put us among the top 10 in the country."

    Wake's success has not been limited to team performance. Several Deacon individuals have had top 10 showings in the Bryan National. In fact, in the tournament's six-year history, Wake Forest is the only school that has placed a top 10 finisher each year.

    In 1998, Kelly Kirwin tied for 10th place. One year later, Kirwin finished sixth while teammate Marta Prieto finished in a tie for 10th. In 2000, both Kirwin and Prieto tied for third while Deacon Katie Brenny tied for ninth. Prieto finished fourth in 2001 while Clau placed one spot behind her in fifth. The following year, 2002, current junior Ashley Hoagland finished in a tie for sixth place in her first Bryan showing. Last year, Clau continued the Deacons' top-10 tradition by winning the tournament.

    "We are pleased to be co-hosting this event with UNCG," Dailey said. "It has been an excellent partnership where we work together to host one of the best tournaments in collegiate golf. The Champions Course at Bryan Park is very challenging and brings out the best in our students."

    The Bryan National has become one of the most popular tournaments in the nation. Top teams return to Browns Summit to compete each year.

    "It's developed into one of the best tournaments in the country," added Dailey. "Coaches are calling me up wanting to come, so that's exciting."

    Opened in 1990, the Champions Course at Bryan Park has been the tournament's host for the past six years. The Rees Jones design is filled with spectacular holes, seven of which border on the scenic Lake Townsend. The course measures 6,064 yards and will play as par 72.

     

     

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