Bulldog senior golfer Harang Lee helped lead the Georgia women’s golf team to a second-place finish at the SEC Championships.
Harang Lee eagled the final hole of the SEC Championship and posted her third-straight score in the 60s, a 3-under 69, to pace the Bulldogs to a 2-under 286 in the final round at Greystone Golf and Country Club. She finished at 11-under 205, the second-best score in school history. The Bulldogs wrapped up the 54-hole event at 9-under 855, the fifth-best tally ever by UGA, and tied with No. 1 Alabama.
It took SEC records to defeat the Bulldogs. South Carolina’s Katelyn Dambaugh shot 12-under 204 to win the individual title, besting the previous league record of 9-under 207. No. 8 Florida finished at 22-under 842, shattering the previous SEC record by six shots.
“Hats off to Florida,” head coach Josh Brewer said. “It’s a conference record, and you just have to shake their hands. It’s the SEC, and it’s the best teams in the country. Sometimes you can play well and finish second.”
Jillian Hollis matched Lee’s 3-under 69 on Sunday and finished tied for seventh individually at 4-under 212. Rinko Mitsunaga closed with an even-par 72 and tied for 28th overall at 219. Bailey Tardy and Mary Ellen Shuman, who signed for a 77 and an 80, respectively, on Sunday both tied for 50th at 226.
Lee entered the final day atop the individual leaderboard but struggled to get anything going early. She bogeyed No. 4 and No. 9 to turn at 2-over. Lee notched a pair of eagles on the back side, par-5s at No. 11 and No. 18, and also birdied No. 13.
“I’m pretty happy,” Lee said. “It’s been a while since I played this well. I did get a little frustrated today. I didn’t start as fast as I did yesterday and started missing stupid shots, but I was able to get it back and finish strong. There are a lot of good things I can take from this tournament.”
Lee entered the day with two eagles in 17 rounds this season and then posted two in an eight-hole span on Sunday.
“I really needed those because I really wasn’t in a good mood after my first nine,” Lee said. “The first eagle made me say ‘we’re still here, and we can fight through this.’ It was a good wake-up call.”
The two shots gained on Lee’s second eagle pushed the Bulldogs into a tie with the Crimson Tide.
“I’m happy for Harang,” Brewer said. “To watch her grow over these four years and even her senior year, the distraction of (LPGA) Q-School in the fall and to come back this spring and play so well.”
Hollis was steady throughout her round. She birdied No. 5, No. 11 and No. 15 to go along with 15 pars.
“Jillian has been playing great,” Brewer said. “She’s arguably been the best player in our conference and one of the top-five players in the country since the beginning of March. Her work ethic has paid off.”
Georgia will return to action when the Bulldogs host a NCAA Regional at the UGA Golf Course on May 8-10. The 18-team field will be announced this Thursday, April 27. The top-six teams and top three individuals not on advancing teams will go on to compete in the NCAA Championships on May 19-24 at Great Harvest Farms outside Chicago.
“We still have two tournaments later in the year that hand out trophies, and we have to get ready,” Brewer said. “We want to be winners.”
SEC Women’s Golf Championships
Greystone Golf & Country Club
Par 72; 6202 Yards
RESULTS FROM SUNDAY’S FINAL STANDINGS
Texas A&M 282-290-288=860
South Carolina 286-290-284=860
Mississippi St. 295-300-292=887
Ole Miss 296-295-292=889
Katelyn Dambaugh, S. Carolina 68-70-66=204
Harang Lee, Georgia 69-67-69=205
Kelly Grassel, Florida 71-72-65=208
Maria Torres, Florida 70-68-71=209
Maddie Szeryk, Texas A&M 69-71-71=211
Cheyenne Knight, Alabama 75-70-66=211
Jillian Hollis, Georgia 72-71-69=212
Alana Uriell, Arkansas 68-72-72=212
Kristen Gillman, Alabama 72-69-71=212
Taylor Tomlinson, Alabama 72-68-72=212
Kaylee Benton, Arkansas 73-70-69=212
Michaela Williams, Tennessee 71-72-69=212
Additional Georgia Scores
T28. Rinko Mitsunaga, Georgia 76-72-72=219
T50. Mary Ellen Shuman, Georgia 74-72-80=226
T50. Bailey Tardy, Georgia 72-77-77=226