By Cameron Jourdan
Special to The Tuscaloosa News
STILLWATER, Okla. — On a day when other teams went low, Alabama couldn’t find the red numbers.
The Crimson Tide fired a final round 11-over par 299 round, which was its highest during the NCAA Women’s Golf Championships at Karsten Creek Golf Club. It finished tied at 9-under with UCLA after 72 holes and will be the second seed in match play quarterfinals.
Junior Cheyenne Knight, who was tied for the individual lead when she teed off, finished 2-over par on her round and at 5-under par for the tournament, which was good for solo fourth.
“The girls said the greens were a little bit faster (today),” Alabama coach Mic Potter said. “I was watching Cheyenne most of the time, and I couldn’t tell a big difference. We weren’t as sharp, for sure.”
Potter said with the combination of the tournament being shown live on Golf Channel and playing with an eight-stroke advantage, his team had to deal with adversity that it wasn’t used to this season. He said moving into match play, he expect his team, along with the other seven squads, to settle down and play better in the early morning rounds.
This is the first time since the tournament moved to match play to determine a champion in 2015 that Alabama has advanced past stroke play. The Crimson Tide will be matched up with Kent State with a scheduled start time of 7 a.m. Tuesday off the No. 1 tee.
“We can’t take anything for granted,” Potter said. “All the matches are worth a point. It doesn’t matter how much you win by. We’ve got to have everybody engaged.”