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WCC Teams in the Hunt after 36 Holes of NCAA Regional Play

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COMPLETE RELEASES: BYU | GONZAGA | PEPPERDINE 

SAN BRUNO, Calif. – West Coast Conference champion BYU and Pepperdine both are very much in contention two rounds in the books of the 2016 NCAA Regionals. The Cougars sit firmly in a two-way tie for fifth place after two rounds while the Waves are in eighth place, just two shots away from a top-six finish and a trip to nationals. 

Gonzaga’s Bianca Pagdanganan turned in another sub-70 Fridayand remains in the hunt for medalist honors at the NCAA's Bryan Regional, held at Traditions Golf Club.

The freshman shot 69 (-3) during the tournament's second round for a two-day total of 136 (-8). She started out the day with two straight birdies, taking a three-shot lead on the field early and holding it through the rest of the front nine. Pagdanganan added another birdie on No. 8, making the turn at 3-under-par 33. On the back, she tallied two more birdies, a couple of bogeys, and five more pars to clinch her fourth round below 70 of the season. 

At the end of the three-round tournaments, the top six teams in each Regional and top three individuals not on an advancing team will receive berths to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore., later this month. 

BYU – NCAA BATON ROUGE REGIONAL (University Club)
BATON ROUGE, La. — Led by a strong 3-under-par performance by senior Lea Garner, BYU women’s golf moved up the leaderboard on Friday into a fifth-place tie at the 2016 NCAA Women’s Regional being played at The University Club in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“Lea (Garner) was awesome out there today and really everyone played very solid golf,” BYU head coach Carrie Roberts said. “Once we get into our groove, we’re a pretty good team. We’ll just stick to the game plan tomorrow and go out and play tough.”

The West Coast Conference Champion Cougars enter Saturday’s final round looking to maintain their current standing among the top six teams that will advance to the NCAA Championship on May 20-25 in Eugene, Oregon.

Garner led BYU’s solid team effort on Friday with a second-round 69 on the par-72 layout. Including her first-round 73, Garner is currently tied for third overall in the individual standings at 2-under 142, six shots off the pace set by Katelyn Dambaugh of South Carolina.

After playing the first four holes at even par, Garner posted back-to-back birdies on the par-3 fifth hole and par-5 sixth to create some strong momentum. With just two bogeys on the day, she added three more birdies the rest of the way on holes No. 9, No. 14 and No. 17.

Garner’s teammates Kendra Dalton (1-over 73), Brooklyn Hocker (2-over 74) and Alexandra White (2-over 74) all improved upon or equaled their opening round scores while Rose Huang (6-over 78) was just three strokes off her first-round pace.  Overall, Hocker is tied for 25th individually at 4-over 148, followed by White (150), Huang (153) and Dalton (158). 

As a team, BYU put together a 2-over 290 score in Friday’s second round to improve eight strokes over the team’s 10-over 298 first-round score on Thursday. The Cougars moved up two places in the standings in a tie with Oregon for fifth place at 12-over 588. BYU is three strokes out of fourth place, held by Duke at 585, and six shots ahead of seventh place Arizona State (594). 

PEPPERDINE – NCAA STANFORD REGIONAL (Stanford Golf Course)
PALO ALTO, Calif. – After Friday’s second round of the NCAA Stanford Regional, the Pepperdine women’s golf team is within just a couple shots of a top-six finish and a berth in the NCAA Championships.

The Waves didn’t move in the standings – they’re still in eighth place – but they are just two strokes out of sixth place and four away from fifth place. Pepperdine has a two-day total of 593 (298-295) at the par-71 Stanford Golf Course. Arkansas is fifth at 589, North Carolina is sixth at 591 and Michigan State is seventh at 592.

The leaderboard is crowded, however, as the Waves are one of eight teams outside the cut line that are within nine shots of sixth place. The top six teams move on to the NCAA Championships, set for May 20-25 in Eugene, Ore.

Pepperdine will need its best round yet on Saturday, and the Waves will begin the final round on the first tee at 7:30 a.m. along with Michigan State and Wake Forest.

Sophomore Tatiana Wijaya (Jakarta, Indonesia) had the best round of the day for Pepperdine, a 1-over 72. She had a double-bogey early in her round, then reeled off 15 straight pars before a birdie on 18. Freshman Hira Naveed (Perth, Australia) had a 73 and freshman Hannah Haythorne (Honolulu, Hawai’i/IMG Academy) had a 74. Birdies were tough to come by on Friday and Naveed had a team-high three.

Senior Marissa Chow (Honolulu, Hawai’i/Iolani HS) and freshman Patricia Wong (Walnut, Calif./Walnut HS) are tops on the leaderboard for the Waves, with both tied for 24th place at 147. Chow has shot 71-76 and Wong has gone 70-77.

Naveed is tied for 44th place at 150 (77-73), Wijaya is tied for 56th at 152 (80-72) and Haythorne is tied for 74th at 155 (81-74).

Pepperdine is attempting to qualify for the NCAA Championships for the 12th time in program history and the first time since 2012. This is the Waves’ 18th consecutive NCAA Regional appearance.