Rose Zhang of Stanford, the top-ranked women’s amateur in the world, claimed the Pacific 12 Conference individual women’s championship and USC took home the team title at Papago Golf Course in Phoenix, Ariz.
Zhang, who this week set a record for being No. 1 in the world for a total of 136 weeks, claimed her sixth victory of the season and the 10th of her Stanford career, another record, by posting a seven-stroke victory over Beth Coulter of Arizona State, establishing a tournament record for the largest margin of victory.
“It’s an unbelievable honor and a testament to a lot of hard work not just by me but by my teammates as well,” Zhang said of her longevity at No. 1 in the rankings. “Passing names like Lydia (Ko of New Zealand) and Leona (Maguire of Ireland) on any list is incredible. They’ve both gone on to have such impressive professional careers and are great role models in golf.
“I’m grateful for all the support I’ve received and look forward to continuing to pursue my dreams in this game. I’m just pleased to keep playing well and winning. .. I was just trying to do the best I could for my team today and not think of my own score.
“I’m just happy to be in this position and enjoy the moment.”
The sophomore from Irvine carded a winning score of 67-68-69—204, 12-under-par, while Coulter was a distant second at 73-70-68—211, and Amari Avery of USC shot 70-73-69—212 to tie for third with Minori Nagano of Oregon, who finished at 74-72-66—212, Catherine Park of USC, who wound up at 69-70-73—212, and Madelyn Gamble of Washington State, who came in at 71-70-71—212.
Zhang, the reigning NCAA individual champion who recently captured the August National Women’s Amateur, collected seven birdies in the final round.
Zoe Campos of USC shot 71-71-71—213 to tie for seventh with Annika Borrelli of Cal, who finished at 71-70-72—213, while Malia Nam totaled 68-75-71—214 to tie for ninth with Annika Varma of Oregon, who wound up at 70-72-72—214.
Cincy Kou of team champion USC tied for 20th at 74-71-73—218, and standout Brianna Navarrosa suffering from a rib injury after struggling to rounds of 72-78, junior Christine Wang stepped into the lineup in Navarrosa’s place and helped the Trojans win by shooting 4-under-par 68.
USC captured its second Pac-12 title in three years and eight overall with a score of 279-289-281—849, 15-under-par, while defending champion Oregon was second at 288-286-282—856, followed by Stanford at 287-284-286—857, Arizona at 282-286-297—865 and Arizona State at 290-286-295—871.
“We are so proud of this group for all of their efforts this week,” said USC Coach Justin Silverstein, who has led the Trojans to three Pac-12 titles. “We prepared really hard and really smart for this event and we’re thrilled that the hard work was rewarded with another conference title. We have recruited very hard to get a bunch of depth on our roster and we were able to showcase that this week.
“We’re going to enjoy this but also quickly turn our attention to the upcoming NCAA Regionals and NCAA Championships.”
Cal was sixth at 288-293-295—876, followed by Oregon State at 292-291-296—879, UCLA at 296-298-287—881, Washington at 294-291-303—888, Washington State at 297-293-303—893, and Colorado at 297-298-302—897.
For complete results, visit: https://results.golfstat.com//public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=participants&tid=27788