Aug. 16, 2011
OXFORD, Miss. - The Ole Miss women's golf team announced a challenging 2011-12 schedule Tuesday, providing the Rebels the opportunity to compete against some of the best teams in the nation throughout the spring and fall.
"We are excited about the schedule, which has some of our team's favorite tournaments and some new events too," said fifth-year head coach Michele Drinkard. "We will have an experienced team this year, so my goal in scheduling was to play the most competitive schedule we could to prepare us to play in the National Championship. Every tournament this season will have that National Championship feel to it, and I strongly believe the more you are in that environment with very competitive teams you grow as players and ultimately as a team."
The Rebels, who have made three consecutive NCAA Regional appearances, will kick off the fall season Sept. 11-13 at the Cougar Classic (presented by Piggly Wiggly) at Yeamans Hall in Charleston, S.C. Last year Ole Miss took second, and senior Natalie Gleadall captured medalist honors with a final round 67. This will mark the fifth year in a row for the Rebels to open the fall season at the Cougar Classic.
Following the Cougar Classic, the Rebels will compete for the first time in the Golfweek Conference Challenge (Sept. 19-21) at Red Sky Golf Club in Vail, Colo.
"Cougar Classic at Yeamans Hall is one of our favorite tournaments. We stay in member cabins on property at this exclusive club, and the atmosphere and dining is wonderful and relaxing. We are excited about Natalie defending her title," Drinkard said. "The Golfweek Conference Challenge will feature representatives from 18 conferences, and I have heard that the golf course and the scenery is spectacular. What a great way to start our season."
The final two tournaments of the fall are the second annual SEC/Pac-10 Challenge (Oct. 21-23) at Holston Hills Country Club in Knoxville, Tenn., and the Landfall Tradition (Oct. 28-30) at the Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C.
The first ever prestigious SEC/Pac-10 Challenge was played at Stanford last year and rotates every other year, featuring every team from both conferences.
The Landfall Tradition is a new tournament for the Rebels on a golf course that hosted the National Championship in 2010.
The Rebels will tee off the spring Feb. 26-28 back in New Orleans, La. at the Sugar Bowl Classic at English Turn.
During Spring Break, the team returns to Gainesville, Fla., for the Suntrust Gator Invitational (Marc h 16-18), marking the Rebels' first time back at Florida since playing in the NCAA Regional there in 2009.
The highlight of the year is a trip to Maui, Hawaii for the Anuenue Spring Break Classic (March 26-27) at Kapalua, site of the annual PGA Tour's season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions.
"We are excited about the trip," Drinkard said. "We will play in our only 36/18-hole event of the season which will take up most of our time. Of course we will have some time for snorkeling, surfing and or hiking too."
Ole Miss ends the regular season hosting the Rebel Intercollegiate April 6-8 at the Ole Miss Golf Course. This year the College-Am Scramble will be Thursday, April 5th with a field of 36 teams. If interested in playing contact assistant coach Janell Howland at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The SEC Championship will be held at Arkansas' Blessing Golf Club in Fayetteville April 20-22. NCAA regional play begins on May 10 followed by the NCAA Championships at Vanderbilt's Legends Club in Franklin, Tenn., starting on May 22.
The Rebels return three seniors from last year's lineup in Gleadall, Ashley Lance and Haley Millsap. Also returning from the lineup is sophomore Kathryn Fowler. Newcomers Ericka Schneider and Taelor Rubin are expected to make an immediate impact.