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Women's Golf

Stanford Heads to Title Match

Match Play Results Opens in a new window

CARLSBAD, Calif. — After beating Auburn earlier in the day, top-seeded Stanford women's golf earned the right to take on USC in a rematch of last year's semifinal match. The Trojans were winners in 2023, but the Cardinal got the best of USC one year later, winning 3-1 in thrilling fashion late to advance to the NCAA title match.

"I think that is what is impressive that you are able to show up and compete at the right time and that is what they are doing," said Margot and Mitch Milias Director of Women's Golf Anne Walker. "We were just focused on our game. I have so much respect for USC. They have had such a great year and it's been pretty obvious that similar to our team one through five they have a lot of depth as a strength. We were going out there knowing it would be close."
Kelly Xu was a hero all day for Stanford, securing both winning points on the 16th green. Her back nine against Catherine Park of USC was incredible, as she began trailing by one but eventually put herself in position to win on 16. Xu knocked down the winning putt and was immediately mobbed by her teammates, capping off a run of winning four of the final six holes.

The Stanford clincher by Xu was made possible by Megha Ganne winning moments earlier on 17. She hit a birdie putt on 17 to beat Brianna Navarrosa 2&1, another impressive win considering where she was a few holes prior. Ganne was down one heading to 15, and then won three-straight holes to close out the match and earn the second point for Stanford.
After winning a playoff hole against Auburn, Sadie Englemann made things a bit easier this time around against the Trojans and Cindy Kou. She never trailed after winning the second hole, eventually winning 13 with a long birdie putt to win 6&5. Englemann made multiple long-distance birdie putts in her round, including a similarly impressive one on 10 where she was on the fringe of the green.

"It's insane," said Englemann, who is vying for her second national championship at Stanford. "This is my fourth year as a senior and my biggest goal all year is to make it to the finals and being able to do that is surreal. We have been in this position before and we lost in this match last year so being able to get it done this afternoon is a great feeling. This team has so much resilience and patience, it's unreal. I think that no matter what we were going to fight until the end and that is exactly what they did."
Rachel Heck fell in her match, losing 2&1 to Amari Avery, which at the time tied it up at 1-1 overall. Paula Martin Sampedro and Bailey Shoemaker were on the 18th green tied when the match was clinched by the Cardinal.
Match Play Results: Stanford 3, USC 1
Amari Avery (USC) def. Rachel Heck (STAN), 2&1
Sadie Englemann (STAN) def. Cindy Kou (USC), 6&5
Paula Martin Sampedro (STAN) and Baliey Shoemaker (USC), unfinished
Megha Ganne (STAN) def. Brianna Navarrosa (USC), 2&1
Kelly Xu (STAN) def. Catherine Park (USC), 3&2
It will be an all-Pac-12 NCAA Championship match as the Cardinal square off against the UCLA Bruins on Wednesday. The title match begins at 2:15 pm. Fans can tune into live coverage for the title match on Golf Channel.
The matchups will be Paula Martin Sampedro/Caroline Canales, Kelly Xu/Meghan Royal, Megha Ganne/Natalie Vo, Sadie Englemann/Zoe Campos, and Rachel Heck/Kate Villegas.