FAYETTEVILLE, AR (UofA) - University of Arkansas women's golf coach Shauna Estes-Taylor and the Razorbacks host the 2012 Southeastern Conference Championship at Blessings, it was announced today.
Estes-Taylor and the Razorbacks released the 2011-12 schedule which includes this year's league championship. It is the first time since the 2005-06 season that Arkansas has hosted a home women's golf tournament and the first time since the 2000 season that the SEC Championship takes place in Northwest Arkansas.
"We have a great schedule this year," Estes-Taylor said, "but we are especially excited to bring women's collegiate golf back to Northwest Arkansas with the SEC Championship. We are so proud of Blessings, of our facilities and of the Northwest Arkansas area and this event is a great opportunity for us to showcase what a special place we have here.
"I really think the fans in the area will come out and support the event," Estes-Taylor continued. "This is a chance to not only see great women's college golf but to get a glimpse of future professional players as well."
The Razorbacks have a lot of work to do before getting to the SEC Championship. Their four-event fall begins Sept. 23-25, with the NCAA Fall Preview at the Vanderbilt Legends Club, site of the 2012 NCAA Championship. This invitation-only event is open to the top finishing teams at last year's NCAA Championship.
Arkansas next travels to North Carolina for the Lady Tar Heel Invitational, an event the program last took part in in 1998.
The fall continues with the SEC-Pac 12 Challenge in Knoxville, Tenn., as the Razorbacks make the second of what they hope will be three trips to the Volunteer State. Arkansas wraps up with the Longhorn Classic in Austin, Texas, Oct. 31-Nov. 2, as the fall closes.
The spring features a return trip to the Puerto Rico Golf Classic Feb. 12-14, as the Razorbacks make their third appearance in Rio Grande. Then it is on to a new event on the schedule, the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate in Hilton Head, S.C.
The regular season wraps up with what has become a staple for the women's golf team with an appearance at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic in Athens, Ga.
The Razorbacks begin postseason play with the SEC Championship at Blessings, April 20-22. NCAA Regional Championship competition is set for May 10-12, followed by the Vanderbilt-hosted NCAA Championship May 23-26.
"I'm very excited about our schedule," Estes-Taylor said. "Our performance last season really opened the doors up to the best collegiate events in the country. We will be tested every week and I know this squad will be ready to face the challenge. To win championships, you must be comfortable competing with the best teams in collegiate golf. This team is excited about our upcoming schedule and we look forward to putting in the work to be successful on this journey."
Arkansas is coming off a program-best tie for fifth place at last year's NCAA Championship. The Razorbacks return a solid corps of young players paced by All-American Emily Tubert and All-Southeastern Conference performer Emma Lavy. Junior Victoria Vela has two seasons under her belt as well and should again be a consistent performer for Arkansas.