Georgia’s Caterina Don has been included in the preseason watch list for the ANNIKA Award, which recognizes the top women’s college golfer each season. The list was announced on Thursday on the Golf Channel.
Don, who is currently No. 13 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings, enjoyed a stellar first year at Georgia during the 2019-20 season that culminated with her earning All-America honors. She burst onto the collegiate scene by winning her first tournament at Georgia by shooting 9-under at the Minnesota Invitational. In the process, she became just the second Georgia golfer to win her collegiate debut and the first to do so since 1998. Don went on to post four top-5 individual finishes in seven tournaments before the season was cut short by COVID-19.
A native of Pinerolo, Italy, Don produced the fifth-best season stroke average in UGA history, covering 20 rounds at a 72.15 pace. She led the Bulldogs in virtually every statistical category, including counting rounds (100.0 percent), low round (6-under 66), low tournament score (9-under) and birdies (59).
Following a four-month layoff from competition due to the pandemic, Don posted a trio of strong performances in Italy during the summer. The won the Italian Women’s Open, a professional event, won medalist honors a the Italian Match Play Championships and finished as runner-up at the Italian Stroke Play Championships. After returning to the U.S. in August, Don won the Rivermont GCAA Amateur earlier this month.
Georgia will open its 2020-21 season next month when the Bulldogs compete in the Blessings Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., which will be televised by the Golf Channel on Oct. 5-7. Georgia also will travel to play in The Ally in West Point, Miss., in October and wrap up the fall by hosting the 48th annual Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic at the UGA Golf Course on Nov. 6-8.
Created in 2014, the ANNIKA Award presented by Stifel is annually given to the top female U.S. collegiate golfer; the winner voted on by players, coaches and members of the golf media. Named for and presented by Annika Sorenstam, the award was created in partnership with the Haskins Commission to acknowledge the top female golfer at the end of the season, to match the Haskins Award presented by Stifel which acknowledges the top male Division I collegiate golfer.