Women's Golf to Open Fall Slate at Minnesota Invite
Sept. 13, 2013
SAN DIEGO - The San Diego State women's golf team kicks off its 2013 fall schedule early next week when it travels to the Land of 10,000 Lakes for the Minnesota Invitational, Sept. 16-17, in Minneapolis, Minn.
The two-day, 54-hole tournament gets underway Monday at the historic Minikahda Club with the first two rounds, starting at 7:45 a.m. CT, while the final 18 holes will be contested on Tuesday. A live scoring link courtesy of Golfstat will be available on www.goaztecs.com.
Along with host Minnesota, the Aztecs will compete against two other Big Ten Conference squads in Illinois and Nebraska, while GRU-Augusta, Idaho, Jacksonville, Kent State and Texas State are also slated to make the trip to the Gopher State. In addition, SDSU will lock horns with southern California neighbors Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State and UC Irvine to round out the 12-school field.
Third-year head coach Leslie Spalding's starting lineup for the season opener will feature senior Maureen Dunnagan, junior Paige Spiranac, sophomores Emma Henrikson and Shannon Lubar, along with freshman Sirene Blair, while junior Kristina Lynn will participate as an individual golfer.
Henrikson and Spiranac were two of three Aztecs to receive individual bids to the NCAA Central Regional Championships last spring, along with Christine Wong, who completed her eligibility after four brilliant seasons for the Scarlet and Black.
Henrikson earned Mountain West Freshman of the Year honors and garnered first-team all-conference distinction last year after posting a team-best 75.69 stroke average, which ranked sixth in the league. The Malmö, Sweden native posted seven top-25 finishes during the 2012-13 campaign, including a third-place showing at The Gold Rush tournament last February in Yorba Linda, Calif., for which she received MW Golfer of the Week recognition.
Spiranac also collected first-team all-MW accolades in her first semester on The Mesa last spring after transferring at mid-season from the University of Arizona. The Scottsdale, Ariz. native averaged 76.25 strokes per round in seven events, highlighted by a sixth-place showing at the MW Championships, followed by a sparkling effort at regionals where she tied for 19th out of 126 individuals.
Like Spiranac, Dunnagan is another transfer who is entering her second season with the Scarlet and Black. After her arrival on The Mesa last year from North Carolina State, the Lexington, S.C. product played in eight tournaments, making six starts, while finishing with a stroke average of 83.52.
San Diego State's remaining two starters, Lubar and Blair, are both set to make their Aztec debuts on Monday. Lubar competed in five events as a freshman at the University of Denver during the 2012-13 campaign, posting a 78.33 stroke average, including a season-low 73 in the final round of the Golfweek Conference Challenge. A 2013 all-academic Western Athletic Conference selection out of Littleton, Colo., Lubar captured medalist honors at PGA Junior qualifiers in 2010 and 2011 prior to college and also earned a spot in the 2011 U.S. Women's Amateur Championship.
Blair, meanwhile, is a highly touted freshman who signed with SDSU last fall out of South Jordan, Utah, where she captured four consecutive individual state 5A championships at Bingham High School. In addition, Blair was named the Utah Junior Golf Association's Player of the Year on six occasions.
The venerable Minikahda Club, founded at the turn of the 20th century, was the site 1916 U.S. Open, the 1927 U.S. Amateur and the 1957 Walker Cup. Most recently, the course played host to the 1988 U.S. Women's Amateur, as well the 30th edition of the Curtis Cup Match in 1998, before undergoing extensive renovations in 2001.
Following the Minnesota Invitational, SDSU will have only a brief rest before returning to the course for the Branch Law Firm/Dick McGuire Invitational, Sept. 20-21, at the University of New Mexico Championship Course in Albuquerque, N.M.