Ariane Klotz, a freshman from New Caledonia, led the way as Delaware pulled away in an Easter Sunday finish to claim its second straight Colonial Athletic Association championship at Ford’s Colony Country Club’s Blue Heron Course in Williamsburg, Va.
Klotz carded a 2-under-par 70 over the 6,113-yard, par-72 Blue Heron Course layout in the final round to finish third in the individual standings at 2-over 218 and help the Blue Hens repeat as CAA champions. Last year’s title was the first in program history.
Delaware trailed College of Charleston by 10 shots after an opening-round 306. But the Blue Hens made up the deficit and then some with the low round of the tournament, a 7-over 295, in the second round that gave them a two-shot edge over College of Charleston. Delaware then matched that 295 in the final round to pull away for an 11-shot victory with a 32-over 896 total.
The win makes Delaware an automatic qualifier to the NCAA regionals, which tee off May 8. The Blue Hens’ regional destination will be announced on The Golf Channel April 27 at 11 a.m.
College of Charleston, with a 303 in the final round, was the runnerup at 907. UNC-Wilmington was another shot back in third at 908. James Madison finished fourth at 915 and Towson placed fifth in the eight-team field at 924.
Delaware had two other top-10 finishers behind Klotz. Ashley Dingman, a sophomore from Fairfield, Calif., finished alone in eighth at 9-over 225 after a final-round 75. Vitoria Teixeira, a senior from Brazil, finished tied for ninth at 10-over 226 after a final-round 76.
Grace Chua, a senior from Canada, started slowly with an opening-round 84, but came on strong with an even-par 72 in the second round and a 2-over 74 in the final round to finish tied for 13th at 230. Valentina Mueller, a sophomore from Switzerland, finished tied for 24th at 237 after a final-round 76.
UNC-Wilmington’s Lyberty Anderson, a junior from Chesterfield, Va. who transferred from the University of Virginia, captured the individual title, carding an even-par 216 to edge College of Charleston’s Laura Fuenfstueck, a senior from Germany, by a shot.
Anderson opened with a 2-under 70 and never let go of the lead with rounds of 72 and 74. Fuenfstueck also broke par in the opening round with a 1-under 71, added a 74 and finished up with an even-par 72 to finish at 1-over 217.
Delaware’s Klotz opened with a 76, but came on strong with rounds of even-par 72 in the middle round before her final-round 70 that left her alone in third at 2-over 218, just two shots behind Anderson.
James Madison’s Laura Gomez-Ruiz, UNC-Wilmington’s Ellinoora Moisio and College of Charleston’s Josefine Garton finished tied for fourth at 7-over 223. Gomez-Ruiz moved up the leaderboard with an even-par 72 in the final round while Moisio had a final-round 76 and Garton finished up with a 75.