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Virginia women’s golf secures win over Louisville in consolation bracket of NC State’s Wolfpack Matchplay event

The Cavaliers dropped two conference matches before rebounding to comfortably defeat the Cardinals

<p>Senior Celeste Valinho clinched the win over Louisville in the event's final day.</p>

Senior Celeste Valinho clinched the win over Louisville in the event's final day.

No. 19 Virginia women’s golf traveled to Raleigh, N.C. Monday and Tuesday to close out its regular season at NC State’s Wolfpack Match Play event. Competing at the Lonnie Pool Golf Course, the team cruised to a win against Louisville in the consolation bracket.

The lineup consisted of sophomore Megan Propeck, senior Virginia Bossi, junior Rebecca Skoler, freshman Maline Kraus and senior Celeste Valinho. The team competed without sophomore Amanda Sambach and junior Jennifer Cleary as they played in the Augusta National Women’s Amateur event ahead of The Master’s at the same venue.

Sambach came in 14th place at the ANWA event and shot a 54-hole total of 3-over 219. Cleary also competed in the tournament but did not make it to the weekend after shooting 4-over 148 in the first two rounds and missing the cut.

The Cavaliers began the tournament as the No. 3 seed facing No. 6 North Carolina. Other ACC teams in the tournament included Florida State, Virginia Tech, South Carolina, Louisville, Duke and NC State.

Sambach and Cleary lead the team in stroke average and were missed during this tournament as the other players struggled against their opponents. In its first match of the day, Virginia fell 3-2 to the Tar Heels.

Skoler was able to defeat North Carolina’s sophomore Riley Quartermain up five holes with four to play. The only other Cavalier winner was Kraus who beat senior Krista Junkkari in 17 holes.

Propeck battled junior Crista Izuzquiza through all 18 holes, but was unable to come up with the win and lost one down. Smyth and Valinho lost down three with two holes to play against their opponents.

The loss to North Carolina meant Virginia moved to the consolation bracket and played Florida State next. The Seminoles defeated the Cavaliers 3-1-1.

The only Virginia player to win her match was Bossi who secured the match after sixteen holes. Skoler went back and forth with her opponent Seminole’s junior Alice Hodge, but they finished on the eighteenth in a tie. Valinho and Propeck were defeated with two holes to play, and Smyth lost in fifteen.

The Cavaliers would earn their only win of the tournament against Louisville in their final match of the event.

Propeck quickly defeated Louisville’s senior Hana Ryskova up three, but Virginia was in trouble after the Cardinals picked up two wins in the second and third matches.

Kraus was able to tie the match after beating senior Rylee Suttor in 17 holes, and Valinho came away with the win in a close match against her opponent to put the Cavaliers up 3-2.

While the overall results of the event were not thrilling for Cavalier fans, Virginia was handicapped with the subtraction of two of its top performers. Securing a win in the consolation bracket at least ends the regular season on a high note, and with Sambach and Cleary in tow, the Cavaliers will look to have a stronger showing in postseason play. 

To kick off the postseason, the Virginia players will travel to Greensboro, N.C., April 13-16 to compete at Sedgefield Country Club in the ACC Championships.


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