SUGAR GROVE, Ill. – Monica Vaughn delivered another big moment for Arizona State, helping the Sun Devils to a comeback victory over Stanford that sent them to the title match of the NCAA Women’s Golf Championship against top-seeded Northwestern.

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The Wildcats also put together a rally on a rain-softened course. They trailed in four matches when play was halted by darkness on Tuesday, and they returned Wednesday morning to beat USC, 3-2. Janet Mao made a 12-foot par putt on the 19th hole for the decisive victory.

On the line

  • ASU is trying for its eighth national title, the most in NCAA.
  • ASU would become the third straight Pac-12 school to win since the format switched to match play in 2015.
  • ASU would be the seventh Pac-12 team to win the title in the last 10 years.
  • An ASU victory would be the 499th national title for the Pac-12.
  • Northwestern is trying to become only the second Big Ten team to win a women’s golf title. Purdue won in 2010.

Vaughn won the NCAA individual title on Monday, ASU’s NCAA-best sixth overall. Her performance in the rain-delayed semifinals was significant.

Stanford already had won two matches. Swiss freshman Albane Valenzuela was 1 up on Vaughn and in the fairway on the par-5 18th hole when ASU chose not to keep playing because of darkness. Heavy rain on Tuesday forced the semifinals to finish the next morning.

Both players laid up. Vaughn’s pitch from 40 yards short of the green hit the pin and settled a few feet away, and the birdie sent the match to extra holes.

“That was about the greatest shot I’ve hit in my life,” Vaughn said.

She won the 19th hole with a par when Valenzuela, who played in the Olympics last summer, chipped 10 feet by the hole and missed the par putt.

The Sun Devils weren’t in the clear just yet. Linnea Strom, all square in her match with Stanford’s Madeline Chou, had to make a 7-foot par putt on the 18th hole to extend the match, and Strom hit a clutch approach to 10 feet on the first extra hole. Chou was well left of the green and made bogey.

The other semifinal match also went extra holes, and it was just as tense.

Northwestern trailed at some point in all five matches and wound up winning the top two. Kacie Komoto won the final three holes to extend her match against Muni He of Southern California, but then Komoto three-putted the 19th hole from 40 feet and lost.

The decisive match Mao against Gabriella Then, who was 2 up with four to play until Mao won the 16th and the 18th holes to force overtime. Both players missed the green, with Mao in a bunker and Then facing a downhill chip out of the rough.

Mao pumped her fist when her 12-foot par found the middle of the cup. Then, with an 8-foot putt to extend the match, left her putt one rotation short of going in.

Golfweek and the Associated Press contributed to this article.

NCAA Women’s golf national champions

2016 – Washington

2015 – Stanford

2014 – Duke

2013 – USC

2012 – Alabama

2011 – UCLA

2010 – Purdue

2009 – Arizona State

2008 – USC

2007 – Duke

2006 – Duke

2005 – Duke

2004 – UCLA

2003 – USC

2002 – Duke

2001 – Georgia

2000 – Arizona

1999 – Duke

1998 – Arizona State

1997 – Arizona State

1996 – Arizona

1995 – Arizona State

1994 – Arizona State

1993 – Arizona State

1992 – San Jose State

1991 – UCLA

1990 – Arizona State

1989 – San Jose State

1988 – Tulsa

1987 – San Jose State

1986 – Florida

1985 – Florida

1984 – Miami

1983 – TCU

1982 – Tulsa

ASU advances to semifinals

Arizona State advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA Women’s Golf Championships in Sugar Grove, Illinois, on Tuesday.

A day after finishing third as a team in the 54-hole stroke play portion, the Sun Devils made quick work of Florida in the match play quarterfinals, winning 5-0.

Olivia Mehaffey and Roberta Liti each notched 5-and-4 victories, while Linnea Strom and Sophia Zeeb also won. But the clinching point was earned by NCAA individual medalist, senior Monica Vaughn, who defeated Karolina Vlckova, 2 and 1. Vaughn was 2 down through seven holes in her match before giving herself a wake-up call.

“I just tried to play the golf and course and make as many pars as I could,” Vaughn said.

ASU next faces Stanford, the national runner up to Washington a year ago. Stanford eliminated Baylor to advance.

A third Pac-12 team is still alive: USC faces Northwestern in the other semifinal match.

“We’re just trying to enjoy ourselves,” ASU head coach Missy Farr-Kaye said. “Take it one shot and one hole at a time, and just see what happens.”

Monica Vaughn wins ASU’s 6th NCAA women’s golf championship

May 22, 2017

Arizona State’s Monica Vaughn won the national title at the NCAA Women’s Golf Championships in Sugar Grove, Illinois, on Monday.

Vaughn shot 74-72-71 to finish one stroke ahead of Jennifer Kupcho of Wake Forest and Leona Maguire of Duke, the top-ranked amateur in women’s golf.

“It actually didn’t even hit me until this morning when we got out of the cars when we got to the golf course, Coach gave her great opening speech of each day, and then we kind of all started crying and I started crying and was like, oh, my gosh, it could be my last round ever as a Sun Devil,” Vaughn said. “… I pulled it together and said, ‘I have one round to play, and we’ll hopefully get into match play, but being a senior and to finish like this is an amazing feeling.’ I mean, I can’t even describe how I‘m feeling right now. But to be a Sun Devil, too, is one of the greatest things.”

Vaughn was four shots back with four holes to play when she made back-to-back birdies, while Kupcho hit a 9-iron into the water on 17 and three-putted for triple bogey.

Vaughn is ASU’s sixth national champion – the most in women’s college golf – and first since 2008.

She also won medalist honors at the NCAA Regional last week while leading ASU to the team victory in Lubbock, Texas, giving the senior two wins and two second-place finishes in her last five events.

ASU’s individual champions

2017 – Monica Vaughn

2008 – Azahara Munoz

1999 – Grace Park

1995- Kristel Mourge d’Algue

1994 – Emilee Klein

1985 – Danielle Ammaccapane

ASU still alive in team event

ASU finished the three-day, stroke-play portion on Monday in third place (+45). Northwestern was first (+33), followed by Stanford (+41).

The Sun Devils are one of eight teams left and will face Florida in the quarterfinals as match play begins.

“We’re not done,” Vaughn said. “The Sun Devils are not done yet. We’re going to go out and give it our best shot (Tuesday) and Wednesday.”

Missy Farr-Kaye is in her second year as head coach at ASU.

Tuesday’s quarterfinal matches

  • ASU vs. Florida
  • Northwestern vs. Kent State
  • Stanford vs. Baylor
  • Ohio State vs. USC

Should the Sun Devils advance to the semis, they will face the winner of the Stanford-Baylor match.

The championship match will be on Wednesday.

ASU has seven national titles in women’s golf, the most in women’s college golf. Its last came in 2009.

Television coverage

Tuesday – NCAA Women’s Golf Championships, team match play quarterfinals, 8 a.m., Golf Channel

Tuesday – NCAA Women’s Golf Championships, team match play semifinals, 1 p.m., Golf Channel

Wednesday – NCAA Women’s Golf Championships, team match play National Championship, 1 p.m., Golf Channel


ASU womens golf wins NCAA regional in Texas

May 11, 2017

The Arizona State women’s golf team advanced to the NCAA Championships for the first time since 2014 after winning the Lubbock Regional on Wednesday by 21 shots.

ASU finished 22-under, easily winning its first regional title since 2009 and its sixth overall.

Monica Vaughn (-8), Olivia Mehaffey (-7) and Linnea Strom (-6) finished 1-2-3 in the regional. Roberta Liti (+2) tied for 17th and Sophia Zeeb (+4) finished T-25.

The Pac-12 had ten teams qualify for the four regionals. Cal, Oregon, Stanford and USC also advanced to the NCAAs. Arizona, Colorado, Oregon State, UCLA and Washington failed to advance.

The NCAA championships are May 19-24, hosted by Northern Illinois.

Golf Channel will carry the live coverage of the final three days (May 22, 23 and 24).

Lubbock Regional

1. Arizona State

2. Furman

3. Oregon

4. Texas

5. Texas Tech

6. Kent State

Individuals: Julienne Soo, Oklahoma; Alex White,BYU; Susie Cavanagh, Oregon State.

Albuquerque Regional

1. Stanford

2. Duke

3. Pepperdine

4. USC

5. California

6. Miami

Individuals: Martina Edberg, Cal State Fullerton; Bianca Pagdanganan, Gonzaga; Nadine White, Campbell.

Athens Regional

1. Alabama

2. Northwestern

3. Michigan State

4. Baylor

5. Clemson

6. North Carolina

Individuals: Jennifer Kupcho, Wake Forest; Laura Fuenfstueck, College of Charleston; Maya Walton – Princeton.

Columbus Regional

1. Florida

2. South Carolina

3. Florida State University

4. Ohio State

5. Purdue

6. Michigan

Individuals: Cara Gorlei, Arkansas; Camila Serrano, Florida International; Maddie Szeryk – Texas A&M.