Ole Miss wins NCAA Championship, first women's national title in school history
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Chiara Tamburlini earned her first point of the week for Ole Miss on Wednesday in the final of the NCAA Women's Golf Championship against Oklahoma State.
It opened the floodgates to a national championship, the first women's title in school history. Tamburlini's 6 and 5 win was the largest margin of victory in the women's final.
“I think it’s great because it’s just all about leaving our legacy," senior Kennedy Swann said. "We’ve talked about that as a team. We want to be remembered well. We have several alums who are now on the LPGA Tour who have played really well, and I think it’s just great because we’re a part of that team and we get to leave our legacy.”
Swann earned the Rebels their second point with a 2 and 1 win over Maja Stark. Swann's win pushed her career match-play mark to 10-2.
“It started with Julia Johnson," Ole Miss coach Kory Henkes said. "She had no business committing to us when we weren’t very good, to be honest. She was really a turnaround player for us to totally buy in, to totally set goals early on and I think they all just saw the vision of what they could accomplish at Ole Miss and they wanted to be a part of that. I’m so thankful to everyone standing behind me and all those who have played before them.”
“I can’t even describe it," Johnson said. "I don’t know. I mean, no one ever thought that we could do this. No one ever really believed in us, and I knew. I just knew when I committed here that we could do this and I just believed in us from the start. It’s just really special. I’m just really thankful for this moment.”
Then it was Ole Miss sophomore Andrea Lignell, who played 40 holes over the quarterfinals and semifinals on Tuesday, draining a five-footer on the 17th hole to clinch the win.
“I was nervous but also kind of excited about having the deciding putt," Lignell said. "It was really fun.”
Ole Miss is the 16th team win a national title in 39 years of the NCAA Championship. The Rebels are the fourth SEC team-and first since Alabama in 2012-to win the championship.
Oklahoma State, which knocked out defending national champion Duke with a 5-0 showing in the semifinals on Tuesday, was also attempting to win the first women's title in school history.