With a little “help” from Wake Forest’s Jennifer Kupcho, ASU’s Monica Vaughn took home the individual title at the 2017 Women’s NCAA Championship.
The 22-year-old senior Sun Devil birdied two of her last four holes to finish at one-under par (71) for the day, while Kupcho carded a disastrous triple bogey on her second-to-last hole. She was ultimately unable to overcome the three-shot swing that left her one stroke behind Vaughn.
“I had no idea,” said Vaughn, in an interview with Golf Channel. “I got no feeling that I might be the champion.”
Ranked 18th in the country going into the event, Vaughn has been playing solid golf of late. She notched a victory in regionals and finished third or better in four of the last five tournaments she entered.
“Being a senior, and to finish like this is an amazing feeling,” said Vaughn in an interview with Golfworld. “I can’t even describe how I’m feeling right now.”
The Sun Devil’s celebration will be on hold, however. Vaughn’s performance helped the team finish third overall, good enough to force a faceoff with Florida in a quarterfinal match on Tuesday.
With the win, Vaughn joins the lustrous list of Sun Devils to earn individual national championship honors in the history of Arizona State University:
Men’s NCAA individual National Championships
1989, ’90 and ‘92: Phil Mickelson
1993: Todd Demsey
2003: Alejandro Canizares
Women’s NCAA individual National Championships
2017: Monica Vaughn
2008: Azahara Munoz
1999: Grace Park
1995: Kristel Mourgue d’Algue
1994: Emilee Klein
1985: Danielle Ammaccapane
1960: Joanne Gunderson-Carner
1962: Carol Sorenson
1969: Jane Bastanchury-Booth
1970: Cathy Gaughan