FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – The NAU women's golf team prepares for a final tune-up before hosting the Big Sky Championship as it will compete Mon-Wed at the Wyoming Cowgirl Classic at the Ocotillo Golf Resort in Chandler, the same course upon which the Big Sky Championship will be contested April 21-23.
"It's been a few weeks since we competed last but we've been doing some competitions to solidify our lineup and we're back in a competitive mode," NAU head coach Brad Bedortha said. "We were playing well when we left off so my goal is to get us back in that mode where we are competing well. I feel really comfortable with the roster we have; our top four have been pretty solid most of the spring so I feel comfortable with them and now we're just trying to solidify our fifth player who will compete for us."
The Lumberjacks will be amongst a field of 19 teams, including nine of the 11 teams that will be competing on the same course for the Big Sky Championship with only North Dakota and Idaho State not taking part this week. Other competitors include Mountain West schools Wyoming, Boise State, and Colorado State as well as BYU, Santa Clara, and Xavier.
Being held for the seventh consecutive year, NAU has won two of the six previous Cowgirl Classic's, earning team victories in 2007 and 2009. Individually, former Lumberjack Ali Carter won the individual title in 2007 and current NAU senior Stephanie Kim was the individual champion during her freshman season in 2010, carding an even-par 216 including an opening-round 68. NAU has already played on the Ocotillo course once before this season as the team placed second at the Lumberjack at Ocotillo in mid-February.
The Lumberjacks last competed March 15-16 at the Mountain View Collegiate in Tucson where they finished seventh amongst the field of 15. Kim tied for eighth place after shooting an even-par 72 in the final round while freshman Savana Bezdicek, who has won two individual titles this season, shot a career-best 220 over the three rounds of the tournament and tied for 20th.
Kim, NAU's lone senior and a two-time Big Sky Player of the Year, feels confident that her team will end the season strong and enter the conference championship with supreme confidence.
"The season has been going great and we've had really good tournament recently so I'm feeling like we are in a good place going into conference," said Kim on the Lumberjacks Weekly podcast. "Being on the same course as conference will give us a good idea of how the tournament will play this year and it's a good opportunity for us to get to see the course more. The more you play a course the more comfortable you feel, so it's great."
Action will begin at 6:30 a.m. each day with FREE admission at the Ocotillo Golf Resort, which is located at 3751 S. Clubhouse Drive in Chandler.