The Gators women’s golf team found itself within striking distance of the cutoff after Sunday’s second round of play at the NCAA Championships in Sugar Grove, Illinois.
Through 36 holes of the 54-hole contest, Florida was in 12th place, sitting three strokes back of the eight-team cutoff.
But thanks to Monday’s performance, the Gators will live to fight another day.
Florida secured their spot in match play with the help of the third-lowest team score of the afternoon at 4-over.
The best finish for the Gators under coach Emily Glaser came last year when her team finished 17th at the NCAA Championships. This will mark the first time during Glaser’s tenure as head coach that the team has moved on to match play.
Continuing her resurrection from a woeful first round, senior Maria Torres proved she was worth the First-Team All-SEC selection, carding three birdies in her first nine holes to cruise to an even-par finish. Torres finished the preliminary rounds with a score of 10-over to secure a tie for 17th place.
Junior Taylor Tomlinson, sophomore Sam Wagner and senior Karolina Vlckova all had impressive days as well. Vlckova and Wagner both posted scores of 1-over, combining to drain three birdies. Tomlinson had two birdies herself and finished at 2-over for the day, giving her a final score of 13-over and putting her in a tie for 24th overall.
Match play begins today at 8 a.m. against Arizona State, which placed third through the preliminary rounds.
Glaser said she was proud of her team, but knows that there’s more work to be done.
“Match play is so much fun and our team is really excited to have this opportunity,” Glaser said in a release. “Arizona State is a great team with a lot of talent and depth. I think we match up well with them.”
Contact Morgan McMullen at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @MorganMcMuffin.
Maria Torres watches her shot during the SunTrust Gator Invitational on March 11, 2017, at the Mark Bostick Golf Course in Gainesville.