The DI women’s golf championships will tee off Friday, May 20 and run through May 25 at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona. This is the second year in a row that Grayhawk hosted the championship round of DI men’s and women’s golf.
Last year provided exhilarating moments in the stroke and match play portions. Stanford’s Rachel Heck took home the individual championship with a score of eight-under over 72 holes. One the team side, Ole Miss knocked off Texas, Arizona and Oklahoma State en route to their first championship in program history.
This time around, it’s still anyone’s game. To catch up on a few storylines, Stanford is back again with a stacked roster, and in addition to Heck returning, the Cardinal also have the world No. 1 amateur Rose Zhang. Oregon has been a dominant force with wins in virtually every corner of the nation. Oklahoma State is back to avenge last season’s loss in the title match and many more intriguing teams and players filling out the rest of the leaderboard.
Here are my predictions for the 2022 DI women’s golf championship:
Teams to qualify for match play:
1. Oregon — The Ducks have been able to succeed on multiple different styles of courses. Their most recent win was the in the southwest at the University of New Mexico Championship Course.
2. Stanford — Stanford has the deepest roster in the nation. Currently, the Cardinal have four players in the World Amateur Golf Rankings top-50. Also, their experience and past success here should be conducive to a solid stroke play performance.
3. Oklahoma State — Between the fall and spring schedules, Oklahoma State has yet to finish worse than third as a team in all 12 events up to this point. That combined with four out five of last year’s starters from the 2021 NCAA championship.
4. San Jose State — The Spartans have been one of the best teams this season, with five wins in the spring. It seemed like they were about to cool off at the Ann Arbor Regional a week ago, but a couple solid rounds helped right the ship. Natasha Andrea Oon is the name to watch on this SJSU roster.
5. Arizona State — Just like a lot of teams in this year’s field, Arizona State has some experience with this course. They also are the most acclimated to desert golf and the high temperatures. They too bring experience from last year’s championship. Two of the five starters from that team are back getting consistent playing time including Ashley Menne, who finished in fourth in the 2021 championship.
6. South Carolina — A revamped roster from last season. Only two starters from last year’s NCAA championship roster are with the team currently. Freshmen Hannah Darling and Louise Rydqvist along with grad transfer Tai Anudit have been a big part of this roster’s five wins between the fall and spring.
7. LSU — Another solid roster with two great players at the front in Ingrid Lindblad, the No. 2 amateur in the world, alongside the runner up in the 2022 Augusta National Women’s Amateur Latanna Stone. The Tigers don’t have the wins that some of these other teams have, but they’re a solid team.
8. Wake Forest — The best team in the ACC this season, winning the ACC championship and two other events this spring. They’ve been led by Rachel Kuehn. She’s playing some of her best golf coming into this tournament with four straight top-10s, including a win and a T2 at the Franklin Regional.
Rose Zhang, Stanford — Kind of a repeat of last season with Heck winning the individual title. As a freshman, she came into the season as the top player in the world and she has proved why she deserves that distinction. After winning three consecutive events in the fall, she followed it up with four second-place finishes, a T4 and a T10. In her short college career, she’s finished with 13 of her 27 rounds at par or better.
No. 1 Oregon def. No. 8 Wake Forest
No. 2 Stanford def. No. 7 LSU
No. 6 South Carolina def. No. 3 Oklahoma State
No. 5 Arizona State def. No. 4 San Jose State
No. 1 Oregon def. No. 5 Arizona State
No. 2 Stanford def. No. 6 South Carolina
No. 2 Stanford def. No. 1 Oregon — It might not end up being the correct prediction of the finals and winner, but this would for sure be one of the most interesting. Stanford's depth overcomes Oregon’s consistency in the finals to claim the Cardinal’s first title since 2015.
Stay tuned here for live updates throughout the 2022 DI women’s golf championship.