Lindy Duncan
Duke
Junior

Key Notes:
• Ranked as the nation’s No. 1 women’s collegiate player by Golfweek, Duncan comes into the championships on quite a roll. She hasn’t finished lower than seventh this season and has shot par or better in nine of her last 10 rounds, with an average score of 70.50 in that span. Duncan has won four times this season, including the Mason Rudolph Fall Preview at the Legends Club (she finished at 4-under par 212 on rounds of 75-69-68) and the ACC Championship. She tied for third in the NCAA East Regional.
 

Emily Tubert
Arkansas
Sophomore

Key Notes:
• Ranked as the nation’s No. 2 collegiate individual player, Tubert has been selected for the 2012 Curtis Cup team and helped Team USA win the Spirit International matches in the fall. Though she hasn’t won individually, Tubert has finished fourth or better in five of six starts this spring, including a second at the Lady Puerto Rico Classic, a third at the SEC Championships and a tie for fourth in the NCAA Central Regional.

Marina Alex
Vanderbilt
Senior

Key Notes:
• With home course advantage in her favor, Alex comes into her final collegiate tournament ranked No. 3 nationally. The 2012 SEC Women’s Golf of the Year, Alex’s only win was a one-round dual match victory against Texas. But she comes into the NCAA Championships off strong back-to-back performances: a second in the SEC Championships and a third in the NCAA Central Regional.

Brooke Pancake
Alabama
Senior

Key Notes:
• A 2011 All-American and four-time All-SEC selection, Pancake was named to the 2012 Curtis Cup team earlier this season. Coming off a less-than-stellar tie for 35th in the NCAA East Regional, the Chattanooga, Tenn., native will try to rebound on her home-state course. She finished second twice this season, in the Tar Heel Invitational and the Daris Rucker Intercollegiate.

Austin Ernst
LSU
Sophomore

Key Notes:
• At No. 7 in the world, Ernst is the top-ranked American women’s amateur golfer. Ernst captured the 2011 NCAA individual title by three strokes, and will try to become the first repeat champion in Division I women’s history. Ernst went on to reach the 2011 U.S. Amateur semifinals, tied for 49th in the 2012 Kraft Nabisco Championships (the LPGA Tour’s first major) and will play on the Curtis Cup team. She won the Cougar Classic in September and was second in the NCAA West Regional.
 

 

UCLA Bruins

Noting UCLA: The defending NCAA team champion, the Bruins are trying to win their fourth title and become the first team since Duke in 2007 to successfully repeat. The Bruins are led by 2012 Curtis Cup team member Tiffany Lua, 2011 U.S. Women’s Public Links champion Brianna Do, and freshman Erynne Lee, ranked No. 5 nationally by Golfweek. The Bruins have finished first in seven of 11 starts this season, including a win in the Mason Rudolph Fall Preview at the Legends Club and a tie for first with LSU in the NCAA West Regional after a fourth-place finish in the Pac-12 Championships.

Alabama Crimson Tide

Noting Alabama: Ranked second in all the major polls, the Crimson Tide is making just its seventh appearance in the NCAA Championships, including a tie for eighth last season. Alabama has won eight tournaments the last two seasons, and finished second here in the Mason Rudolph Fall Preview to UCLA. The Crimson Tide is led by 2012 Curtis Cup team member Brooke Pancake and two other players ranked in the Golfweek/Sagarin Top 10: Stephanie Meadow and Jennifer Kirby.

USC Trojans

Noting USC: The Trojans are aiming for their third team title and first since 2008 with a strong team led by returning All-Americans Lisa McCloskey (also on the Curtis Cup team) and Sophia Popov and 2012 Pac-12 champion Doris Chen. The Trojans come in on a strong roll, having finished first or second in four of their last five events including a win in the NCAA Central Regional (McCloskey tied for first individually as well).

Arizona State Sun Devils

Noting Arizona State: No team has made more appearances in the NCAA Championships (30) or won more team titles (seven, most recently in 2009) than the Sun Devils. Arizona State hasn’t won as a team this season, but the Sun Devils have finished in the top three five times, including at tie for third in the Mason Rudolph Fall Preview. The Sun Devils are led by senior Giulia Molinaro, who won the team’s only individual title in the season-opening Dale McNamara Invitational and has seven top 10s, including a tie for second in the Pac-12 Championships.

LSU Tigers

Noting LSU: The Lady Tigers rebounded from a struggling showing at the SEC Championships where they tied for seventh to tie UCLA for first place in the NCAA West Regional earlier this month. Led by defending NCAA individual champion Austin Ernst, the Lady Tigers are also coming off a school-best third-place finish in last year’s team competition. LSU won two other team titles, taking the Tar Heel Invitational in October and the Lady Puerto Rico Classic in February.

All photos courtesy of respective school athletic departments.