Women's Golf: Season Recap
The University of New Mexico womens golf team completed the 2002-03 season at the NCAA Central Regional after finishing in a three-way tie for 12th place.
With a young and determined squad, head coach Jackie Booth and the Lobos finished the season scoring three tournament titles, the Dick McGuire Invitational, the Las Vegas Founders Womens Intercollegiate and their fourth straight Mountain West Conference Championship, making it back-to-back seasons with three tournament wins.
Throughout the season UNM was ranked among the top-20 teams in the nation, their highest ranking coming at No. 6. Individually, sophomore Kailin Downs led the Lobos finishing the regular season at No. 18.
Downs garnered many honors this season including being named the MWCs Golfer of the Year for the second straight year. She was named All-Conference and was a two-time MWC Golfer of the Month (Apr. 2003 & Sept. 2002). Downs completed the season with a season stroke average of 74.1, establishing a new UNM sophomore record, a record formerly held by teammate Kristi Larsen (74.9 2001-02).
This season two Lobos captured individual titles including Larsen at the Las Vegas Founders Womens Intercollegiate and junior Katrina Leckovic who caputred individual medalist honors at the MWC Championship. It was the first collegiate title for both players at New Mexico.
Again New Mexico led the conference brigade in honors with four players being named All-Conference for the second straight year including Downs and Leckovic, two-time honorees, and sophomores Christina Spence and Shannon Johnson who made the team for the first time.
Not to be outdone, head coach Jackie Booth also raked in the honors and was named the Ladies Professional Golf Association 2002 National Coach of the Year for the second time in her tenure at UNM (1998). Booth also captured, for the third consecutive year, the MWC Coach of the Year honor. Booth returns all of this years squad back next season.
New Mexico in the Rankings: In the latest poll released on Apr. 28 by GolfWeek Magazine, UNM maintained its position at No. 12. The Lobos dropped to No. 15 in the GolfDigest Womens Coaches Poll of May 9th and remained at No. 15 in GolfStat NCAA stats (May 6) . Final team rankings will be available after the 2003 NCAA Womens Golf Championships being held May 20-23 in West Lafayette, Ind.
In GolfWeek individual rankings the Lobos have three players ranked in the top-100 including sophomore Kailin Downs who ranks No. 20. Junior Katrina Leckovic climbs 14 spots to No. 65, while sophomore Christina Spence is listed at No. 94. Sophomore Shannon Johnson ranks No. 183, while junior Kellyn Newman is listed at No. 463. Junior Kristi Larsen along with freshman Kelli Van Winkle did not participated in enough tournament rounds to qualify for individual rankings.
Individual Notes: (alphabetical order)
Kailin Downs: finished with a season stroke average of 74.1, which is a new UNM Sophomore Record named the MWCs Player of the Year for the second straight year named to the 2002-03 MWC All-Conference team for the second straight year scored best finish of the season with her third place at the MWC Championships finished in fourth place for the fourth time this season at the ASU Invite was named April 2003 and September 2002 Mountain West Conference Womens Golfer of the Month - Downs being the lone two-time honoree this season (to date) led the MWC in stroke average shot a career low tournament score of 216 at the UNLV Showdown (76-70-70) and the ASU Invite (71-76-69) tied her career low round of 69 in the final round of the ASU Invite placed in Top-5 individually in six tournaments; top-15 in two is listed No. 20 in GolfWeek individual rankings (Apr. 28) along with teammate Spence was named Dollar Rent-a-Car Academic Athlete of the Year for Womens Golf
Shannon Johnson: named to the 2002-03 MWC All-Conference team; the first honor for Johnson in her two-years at UNM played in eight of 10 events for the Lobos this season finished with a 77.9 stroke average shot a season low round of 71 in the second round of the UNLV Collegiate Showdown best finish of the season was an 8th place at the 2002 McGuire listed No. 9 in MWC stroke average is ranked No. 183 in GolfWeek individual poll (Apr. 28)
Kristi Larsen: came back from a hand injury to win the UNLV Collegiate Showdown in a playoff situation her individual medalist honor at UNLV was the first tournament win for the junior at UNM finished with a collegiate tournament low score of 215 (-1) her final round 69 (-3) was a season low Larsen was awarded the Leslie Self Inspirational Award - presented to UNM female student-athletes on an annual basis based on leadership, character, determination and commitment to team. participated in four tournaments with a stroke average of 74.0 (nine rounds...666 strokes)
Katrina Leckovic: captured her first individual title as a Lobo at the 2003 MWC Championships scored a new MWC and personal low round of 67 in the second round of the championships; tournament score of 216 was also a personal best named to the MWC All-Conference team for the second straight year finished with a season stroke average of 75.2 in 28 rounds one of three Lobos to have played in every tournament this season finished second in conference stroke average at 75.4 ranked No. 65, climbing 14 spots from the previous listings, in GolfWeek rankings (Apr. 28)
Kellyn Newman: participated in six tournaments this season for the Lobos including the 2003 MWC Championships & the NCAA Central Regional finished 23rd at the conference championships, her best finish this season finished with a stroke average of 80.7 scored a career low round of 72 in the first round of the NMSU Intercollegiate
Christina Spence: scored a collegiate career low round of 69 in the second round of the 2003 MWC Championships finished tied for 4th place, her best collegiate finish to date named All-Conference for her efforts this season scored a collegiate tournament low score of 223 at the conference championships finished with a stroke average of 76.1 ranked No. 4 in MWC season stroke avg. 75.8 one of three Lobos to compete in every tournament this season nationally ranked at No. 94 along with teammate Downs was named Dollar Rent-a-Car Academic Athlete
Kelli Van Winkle: played in two tournaments during the fall schedule - the McGuire (as an individual) and at the Kent Youel Invitational scored a season low round of 76 in the second round of the Kent Youel Invitational finished with a season stroke average is 84.1 qualified for the Lady Gamecock Classic where she placed 81st
NCAA Central Regional Lincoln, Neb. (May 8-10): The 12th-ranked University of New Mexico women's golf team completed their season at the 2003 NCAA Womens Golf Central Regional with their tied for 12th place finish. New Mexico shot a final round 324, under rainy and windy conditions, finishing with a tournament score of 942.
The Lobos needed to place in the top eight teams in order to qualify for the 2003 NCAA Womens Golf Championships. The tournament was held on the Firethorn Golf Course in Lincoln, Neb., which played to a par 71 on 6,033 yards.
Junior Katrina Leckovic carded a tournament score of 231 (73-74-84 +18) to pace the Lobos. Leckovic finished tied for 24th. Sophomore Kailin Downs followed closely with a 232 (80-75-77 +19), shooting a final round 77. Downs, the MWC Player of the Year, finished tied for 31st.
Sophomore Christina Spence finished with a three-round score of 241 (88-74-79 +28) to place tied for 63rd. Shannon Johnson, also a sophomore, carded a tournament 246 (82-80-84 +33) to finish tied for 81st. Junior Kellyn Newman placed tied for 93rd with a tournament score of 252 (81-79-92 +39).
MWC Championships (Apr. 24-26): The University of New Mexico captured their fourth straight victory at the 2003 Mountain West Conference Championships held in Bend, Ore. The Lobos took tournament honors by one-shot over a talented UNLV team 890-891.
Junior Katrina Leckovic took her first tournament title as a Lobo by a two-shot margin over UNLV and MWC Freshman of the Year Sunny Oh. Leckovic sealed the victory for the Lobos by parring the final hole while Oh bogeyed.
For her efforts Leckovic was named All-Conference for the second straight year.
Sophomore Kailin Downs, who finished in third place individually, captured the MWC Player of the Year honors for the second consecutive year. Downs finished with a 73.8 stroke averaged which topped the conference leaderboard.
As a team, New Mexico struggled after the first round under difficult weather conditions, including snow each of the three days. UNM shot a first-round 316 but bounced back in the second round, shaving off 36 strokes and setting a new MWC single round record of 280. Three Lobos scored sub par rounds including Leckovics second round 67, which was not only a personal best, but also set a new conference mark. Downs shot a 70 while fellow sophomore Christina Spence shot a career low 69. The Lobos went into the final round tied with the Rebels.
After all was said and done, New Mexico placed four members on the All-Conference team including Downs and Leckovic (two-time honorees), plus Spence and sophomore Shannon Johnson.
Head coach Jackie Booth clinched a three-peat as the 2003 MWC Coach of the Year. Booth led the Lobos this season to three tournament titles (to date) and garnered the honor for the third straight year.
ASU Invitational (Apr. 4-6): The 11th ranked University of New Mexico womens golf team finished in sixth place the 2003 PING/ASU Invitational in Tempe. The Lobos shot a final round even par 288 to finish with a tournament score of 889. California took the team title with a score of 876, followed by Texas in second (877) and UCLA in third (878).
New Mexicos Kailin Downs tied a career low of 69 (-3) in the final round and finished with a tournament score of 216 (E), good for fourth place. Downs tournament 216 is also a career low for the sophomore from Bend, Ore.
Junior Kristi Larsen and sophomore Christina Spence both finished tied for 21st place with 225s. Larsen completed the round shooting a 75 (+3) while Spence shot even par 72 in the final round.
Junior Katrina Leckovic saved her best round for last scoring a 72 (E) and finishing with a three-round score of 226. Leckovic finished tied for 31st. Sophomore Shannon Johnson finished with a tournament score of 235 shooting a final round 75 (+3) and placing tied for 68th.
The tournament was played at the Karsten Golf Course in Tempe. The course played to a par 72 on 6,143 yards.
UCLA Bruin Classic Recap (Mar. 24-26): The 13th-ranked University of New Mexico women's golf team finished in a tie for third place with Texas Tech at the 2003 Pioneer Electronics UCLA Womens Golf Classic. The Lobos shot a final round 304 to finish with a tournament score of 917 (+53).
Taking tournament honors was Pepperdine who finished with a 898 followed by USC (900), New Mexico and Texas Tech tied at 917, followed by California who rounded out the top five with a 918.
Setting the pace for the Lobos was junior Katrina Leckovic who finished tied for ninth with a three-round score of 226 (75-78-73). Leckovic shot a final round 73 (+1). Her ninth place was her second best performance of the year (T4th at the Stanford Invite).
UNMs Kailin Downs, a sophomore, finished tied for 15th with a 228 (73-78-77 +12). Sophomore Christina Spence placed tied for 26th with a 233 (79-78-76 +17). Sophomore Shannon Johnson saved her best for last as she shot her best round of the tournament with a final round 78. Johnson finished tied for 59th with a 241 (80-83-78 +25). Lobo junior Kristi Larsen withdrew in the final round with a sprained ankle. The tournament was held at the Robinson Ranch Valley Course which played to a par 72 on 6,254 yards.
Lady Gamecock Recap (Mar. 14-16): The 12th-ranked University of New Mexico women's golf team finished in sixth place at the Lady Gamecock Classic after the final two rounds of the tournament were cancelled due to inclement weather.
UNM shot a first round 309 and finished 13 shots behind tournament winner Wake Forest (296). Rounding out the top five teams included top-ranked Duke (300) in second, Texas (301) in third, while Auburn and host South Carolina finished tied for fourth with 302s.
Junior Kristi Larsen led the Lobos and placed tied for ninth after shooting a first round 74 (+2). Sophomore Kailin Downs finished tied for 27th with a 77 (+5) while fellow sophomore Christina Spence placed tied for 30th with a 78.
Junior Katrina Leckovic tied for 48th place with an 80. Freshman Kelli Van Winkle rounded out the Lobo squad sitting in 81st place after shooting a 93.
Las Vegas Founders Womens Collegiate Showdown Nov. 11-13: The 16th-ranked University of New Mexico women's golf team captured its second tournament title of the season at the Las Vegas Founders Womens Collegiate Showdown in Las Vegas. New Mexico shot a final round 291 ending up with a tournament score of 880 (+16), nine shots better than host UNLV (889). New Mexico junior Kristi Larsen took medalist honors after a playoff situation with Texas A&Ms Nicole Melton and UNLVs Sunny Oh.
This was Larsens first tournament win at UNM. She finished with a three round score of 215 shooting a final round 69 (-3). This was also Larsens first tournament of the season after suffering from a broken hand.
Lobo Kailin Downs finished in sole possession of fourth place, one-shot behind Larsen, Melton and Oh at 216 (76-70-70 E). Downs finished the tournament scoring back-to-back 70s (-2) . It is the third straight fourth place finish for Downs.
Sophomore Christina Spence had a great tournament placing tied for seventh, her best finish as a Lobo. Spence finished with a three-round score of 224 (76-71-77 +8). Junior Katrina Leckovic shot a final round 75 and finished tied for 18th with a 230 (81-74-75 +14). Sophomore Shannon Johnson rounded out the Lobo squad, placing tied for 28th with a 234 (79-71-84 +14).
The tournament was played at the Anthem Country Club Golf Course in Henderson. The course played to a par 72 on 6,194 yards.
Kent Youel Invitational Oct. 29-30: The then seventh ranked University of New Mexico womens golf team finished in fourth place at the 2002 Kent Youel Invitational hosted by the University of Hawaii. The Lobos shot a final round 292 to finish with a tournament score of 898. California took the tournament title with an 870.
Individually Stanfords Kim Rowton took medalist honors with a 215. New Mexicos Kailin Downs placed fourth with a tournament score of 218. This was the second straight tournament Downs finished in fourth place.
Junior Katrina Leckovic shot a final round 70 (-2), which ties her career low round. Leckovic placed tied for 24th with a three-round score of 226. Sophomore Christina Spence placed tied for 26th with a tournament score of 227. Junior Kellyn Newman finished tied for 44th with a 233 followed by freshman Kelli Van Winkle who placed tied for 76th with a 246.
2002 Stanford Invitational Results Oct. 18-20: The University of New Mexico Lobos jumped two spots and finished in fourth place at the Stanford Pepsi Invitational held in Stanford, Calif. The Lobos shot a final round 295 and finished with a tournament score of 896, 11 shots behind tournament winner Cal (885). New Mexico junior Katrina Leckovic and sophomore Kailin Downs both finished tied for fourth place with 220s (+4).
UNM sophomore Christina Spence finished tied for 22nd place with a tournament round score of 226 while fellow sophomore Shannon Johnson tied for 33rd with a 230. Junior Kellyn Newman finished in 88th place with a 256.
2002 NMSU Intercollegiate Results Oct. 7-9: The University of New Mexico women's golf team finished in third place at the 2002 Prices Giveem Five Intercollegiate held in Las Cruces, N.M. The Lobos shot a final round 301 to finish with a tournament score of 904, 10 shots behind tournament winner Baylor (894). Host NMSU finished in second (896). UNMs Kailin Downs carded a tournament score of 226 (+10) which placed her tied for 15th place.
The three-day event at the University Golf course which played to a par 72 on 6,303 yards.
Junior Katrina Leckovic finished tied for 17th with a 227 (+12). Sophomore Shannon Johnson tied for 20th with a 228 (+13) while Christina Spence placed tied for 26th with a 230 (+15). Junior Kellyn Newman rounded out the Lobos squad tied for 49th with a three-round score of 236 (+20). In their two tournaments to date the Lobos have captured one title and placed third in the other.
2002 McGuire Results Sept. 26-28: The University of New Mexico Lobos took tournament honors at the 24th Annual Comcast/Dick McGuire Invitational held Sept. 26-28 at the UNM Championship Golf Course. The tournament field was comprised of 19 teams plus several individuals.
The Lobos captured the title by a seven-stroke margin over Washington and Pepperdine, 891 to 898. It was the second straight McGuire title for New Mexico. Battling cool and blustery conditions most of the final round, the Lobos led from wire-to-wire in the 24th annual tournament that featured 19 teams. UNM also won the team title in 1986.
New Mexico played without its top player, Kristi Larsen, who is sidelined with a broken hand. UNM was led by sophomore Kailin Downs, who finished in fifth place at even-par 219. The five-person winning Lobo team was comprised of three sophomores and two juniors.
We were nervous at the start of the turn because Washington was making a run, said UNM head coach Jackie Booth. But we fought back and showed a lot of character. The win last year was big for us, but we only had eight teams participating. It was real important for us to win with a full field. We wanted to win and repeat, not only for ourselves, but to prove to this field that we will be a national contender this year.