For the first time in three months, the UK women’s golf team is back in action. The team is down in Florida at Eagle Creek Golf Club in Orlando for the UCF Challenge. The first round teed off at 8 a.m. and the tournament runs through Tuesday.
Let’s meet the Cats in attendance:
1. Jensen Castle
After setting the single-season school record with a 71.9 scoring average as a freshman, Castle leads the Wildcats as a sophomore. She’s shot a little higher thus far into her sophomore campaign, averaging 74.6 strokes in the fall season with three rounds of par or better. The UCF Challenge presents a great opportunity for her to start fresh this spring and round back into that record-setting freshman form.
2. María Villanueva Aperribay
The sophomore transfer from Augusta will be making her second appearance as a Wildcat in the UCF Challenge. Villanueva Aperribay’s first appearance in blue came during the Liz Murphey Fall Collegiate Classic, where she tied for 38th with a score of 9-over par.
3. Laney Frye
The freshman from Lexington Christian Academy was the Wildcats’ top golfer in the fall. Frye had a stroke average of 73.9 and was the only member of the team to finish in the top 10 or top 20 of a tournament. Her scores were used in eight of the team’s nine rounds, and she’ll look to stay hot down in Florida.
4. Rikke Svejgård Nielsen
The senior from Denmark has an impressive résumé that includes seven career top-20 collegiate finishes and three top-10 finishes. Svejgård Nielsen averaged 75.1 strokes in the fall and enters the UCF Challenge looking to knock that number down.
5. Marissa Wenzler
The sophomore from Ohio had a solid fall, leading the Wildcats with a 22nd finish at the Liz Murphey Fall Collegiate Classic. Like Svejgård Nielsen, Wenzler averaged 75.1 strokes in nine fall rounds and enters the UCF Challenge with a chance to trim that number down.
UK enters the tournament ranked 17th in Golfstat’s rankings after a tough fall that saw the women endure three SEC-only tournaments due to COVID-19 precautions.
The UCF Challenge is quite big, and the only tournament UK will partake in this spring that’s non-conference. There will be 18 teams competing, meaning the young Wildcats will have a great opportunity to make a name for themselves outside of SEC play to kick off the season.