The USC women’s golf team won the Sun Devil Winter Classic at the Talking Stick Golf Club Piipaash Course in Scottsdale, Ariz. on Tuesday.
The team finished the three-day tournament with a strong overall score of 6-under 858. The host of the tournament, Arizona State, trailed close behind in second place with a score of 2-under 862. Arizona came in third place with a score of 20-over 884.
The tournament was only USC’s second of the season after winning the Lamkin San Diego Invitational last week with a 16-over par finish.
Having to travel to another state each week always brings a new challenge, according to senior Amelia Garvey.
“It was really different,” Garvey said. “Last week was very narrow and you really had to keep the ball in play but this was really firm and fast and windy as well … you really had to play strategically and play for the bounds.”
The tournament was especially important in light of the fact that the field was made up of majority Pac-12 teams. The only Pac-12 team missing from the tournament’s lineup was Stanford.
Leading the Trojans for the second week in a row was graduate student Allisen Corpuz. The veteran finished third individually with a score of 3-under 213 after being 1-under in each round.
Sophomore Linn Grant of ASU and sophomore Emma Spitz of UCLA came in first and second, respectively.
USC seniors Alyaa Abdulghany and Amelia Garvey tied for fourth at 2-under 214.
“I started off with 10 pars and it’s easy to sort of chas[e] birdies when you know it’s out there, but I just really stayed patient and waited for the birdies to come,” Garvey said. “And I think as a team we did the same thing, we weren’t going at flags, we were playing pretty conservatively in the wind and it obviously paid off.”
Freshman Brianna Navarrosa followed, finishing tied for 11th with a 3-over 219. Junior Katherine Muzi struggled finishing 31st with a 10-over 226.
In her USC golf debut, sophomore transfer Alexa Melton, who entered solely as an individual, finished in ninth with a 1-over 217.
After the first round, USC was in third place trailing four shots from the lead. But they did not let the numbers affect them.
“Golf is such a crazy game,” Garvey said. “That’s nothing over four or five people and two more days. Five shots can be made up in three holes just with one person so it’s not the way you start, it’s always the way you finish, and just being in contention after the first day is where you want to be.”
With last year’s season cut short by the coronavirus, the players are still getting back into the groove of tournament play.
“The more tournament rounds I play [the more I’m going to] be able to learn from and just get back into that sort of feeling of being under pressure and knowing what shots to hit,” Garvey said. “I think it’s the same for the team not taking these wins for granted … but also taking a bit of confidence from the way we played because it was a big win.”
The Trojans will look to secure their third win of the season next week at The Gold Rush in Seal Beach, Calif.