April 25, 2012
GULF SHORES, Ala. -- UAB junior Jaime Ritter closed with one of the best rounds of the day and sophomore Caitlin Watts finished in the top 10 as play wrapped up Wednesday at the 2012 Conference USA Women's Golf Championship.
The Blazers posted a final-round score of 314 on Wednesday at the Peninsula Golf & Racquet Club and ended the tournament in ninth place with a three-day total of 950, one stroke behind Marshall for eighth place.
Tulsa won the tournament with a total score of 20-over par 884, followed by UCF in second at 897 and Tulane in third at 901.
Tulane's Maribel Lopez-Porras came from two stokes down in the final round to win medalist honors by four, posting a 1-under par round of 71 on Wednesday to finish at even-par 216 for the tournament. SMU's Felicia Espericueta was second at 4-over par, while 36-hole leader Marita Engzelius of Tulsa tied for third at 5-over.
Watts, the tournament's first-round leader, entered the final 18 holes three shots off the lead and made a quick birdie on her first hole, but an uncharacteristic triple bogey on her fifth hole of the day and four bogeys on her second nine dropped her out of the top five.
Still, Watts shot 78 on Wednesday and finished tied for seventh place at 8-over par 224 for the week, marking the best finish by a UAB player at the C-USA Championship since Jaime Brabb tied for seventh at the 2008 event.
"Caitlin had a little bit of a difficult go of it today, but a top 10 finish is good," UAB head coach Kim Wilcox said. "Jaime came back and played well to finish strong. We would have liked to have a better result as a team, but there were some good things to come out of this week."
Ritter moved up five spots in the final standings to tie for 21st at 16-over 232. The front nine, which served as UAB's second nine all week, had given her problems through the first two days, but Ritter played that half of the course in even par Wednesday on her way to a 74, matching the seventh-best round by any player on the final day.
Freshman Margaret Yeh carded a 79 for the second consecutive day. Yeh could not place in the individual standings after signing an incorrect scorecard Monday, but she bounced back to factor into UAB's team score in each of the last two rounds.