Ueno Wins NWC Spring Classic by Five Strokes

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

TACOMA, WASH. -- Whitney Ueno (Sr., Hilo, HI/Hilo HS) of Willamette University rallied from a one-stroke deficit after the first day to win the Northwest Conference Women's Spring Classic by five strokes with a score of 87 under windy conditions at the Chambers Bay Golf Course on Tuesday, March 31. Ueno, who carded an 84 on the first day with better weather, finished the 36-hole event with a score of 171.

"She played very well given the conditions ... and particularly well down the home stretch," Willamette Head Coach Tom Hibbard said.

"She went par-par-par on three really tough holes that are right along the water (15th, 16th and 17th holes)," Hibbard added. "It was really windy."

Ueno rallied past Brynn Hurdus of Linfield, who led the medalist race after one round with an 83. Hurdus couldn't overcome the weather in the second round and shot a 93 to finish in a tied for second place at 176. In addition to winds gusting from 35 to 40 miles per hour, the golfers also had to deal with cold conditions and wet grounds, following rain earlier in the day.

Natalie Nakamine from the University of Puget Sound also tied for second place at 176. She shot 88 each day. Krystal Pitkonen of Whitworth University placed fourth at 178 (91-87). Pitkonen matched Ueno for the low score of the second round.

Valerie Kitamori of Pacific University and Liz Martin from Whitworth tied for fifth place at 181. Kitamori carded 86-95, while Martin registered 87-94.

Following Ueno on Willamette's team chart was Alex Johnson (Fr., Salem, OR/Blanchet Catholic School). She registered an overall score of 198 (98-100).

Whitworth placed first in the team standings with a two-day total of 739 (361-378). Puget Sound was nine strokes back in second place at 748 (363-385). Linfield took third at 752 (363-389), while George Fox University claimed fourth place at 754 (362-392).

Pacific was fifth at 762 (372-390 and Willamette finished sixth at 869 (439-430). Whitman College took seventh at 899 (444-455). Willamette was the only team to improve its score on the second day. Lewis & Clark College and Pacific Lutheran University did not enter complete teams.

The Spring Classic makes up one-fourth of the overall NWC title. The Fall Classic also represents one fourth of the title, with the NWC Championship meet providing the final half. This year's NWC Championship is set for April 25-26 at the Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima. Wash.

Current NWC team standings for the overall championship are: 1. Whitworth, 16 points; 2. Puget Sound, 12 points; 3. Pacific , 11 points and George Fox, 11 points; 5. Linfield, 10 points; 6. Willamette, 5 points; 7. Pacific Lutheran, 3 points; 8. Whitman, 2 points; 9. Lewis & Clark, 0 points.


NWC Women's Spring Classic
Chambers Bay Golf Course
Par 74, Tacoma, Wash.

Scroll down in document for 2nd Round and Final Result

Whitney Ueno shot a 36-hole total of 171 to win the NWC Women's Spring Classic.

Whitney Ueno shot a 36-hole total of 171 to win the NWC Women's Spring Classic.