FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (seminoles.com) – Freshman Frida Kinhult is in a tie for 11th place in the individual standings, and the Seminole Women’s Golf team is in 12th place in the team standings as stroke play in the NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championship Finals at the Blessings Golf Club comes to a close. Following a nearly two-hour rain delay, the final round of stroke play was suspended due to darkness on Monday and will be completed Tuesday morning. The top eight teams after 54 holes of stroke play will advance to the match play portion of the tournament later on Tuesday.
Florida State, which played in the morning wave of teams, has completed its third round and is currently in 12th place in the team standings. The Seminoles are 10 strokes out of eighth place with three teams ahead of them in the team standings.
The eight teams currently above the cutline are Texas (first place), Duke (second), Southern California (third), Arkansas (fourth), Wake Forest (fifth), Arizona (sixth), Stanford (seventh) and Auburn (eighth). Illinois is the first team below the cutline and three strokes behind Auburn.
Each of the five Seminoles in the event and the final team standings will be determined following the completion of the third round.
Florida State’s finish in the team standings marks the second consecutive top-12 finish and the seventh time in school history the Seminoles have finished in the top-15 of the team standings in the NCAA Championship Finals.
In addition to becoming just the eighth player in school history to finish in the top-20 of the individual standings, Kinhult finished her freshman season with a 70.66 stroke average – a stroke average which sets new Florida State records for a single season and for a career. She bettered the former single season record of Morgane Metraux (71.69 in 201) and the career record of Matilda Castren (72.52, 2014-17). Freshman Beatrice Wallin’s 72.77 stroke average at the end of the season is now the third best career scoring average in school history.
Florida State Head Coach Amy Bond has now coached four players in the last three seasons (Morgane Metraux in 2016; Kim and Morgane Metraux in 2018 and Kinhult in 2019) who have finished in the top-20 of the individual standings of the NCAA Championships. Prior to Bond’s arrival as the Seminoles’ Head Coach for the 2011 season, a total of four players in school history had finished in the top 20 of the individual standings at the NCAA Championship.
“We had the youngest team at the championship and finished in the top 12,” said Bond. “The girls all battled hard but it just didn’t happen this week. It was a great learning experience for all of our players, and I am extremely proud of each of them. This was a great year and I look forward to getting back to work in August.”
Kinhult finished play in the championship with her second consecutive even par score and a three round total of 4 over par 223. She totaled four birdies and 15 holes scored a par or better. Kinhult was nearly flawless on her back nine with eight holes scored at par with one birdie – she was one stroke under par on her final five holes of the round.
Kinhult challenged the Seminoles’ all-time scoring mark from her first tournament as a Seminole when she carded a 68 in the second round of the Cougar Classic on the second day of the season. She totaled 12 rounds scored in the 60’s, led the Seminoles on the leaderboard in seven of the 10 events she played in and was named the ACC Player (Co) and Freshman of the Year.
“A season is always special when it’s connected to history,” said Kinhult. “My teammates and our coaches made it even more fun because they have helped me enjoy this year so much. There have been lots of great rounds in my first season but I also know I can improve a lot. It’s great to set records, but I’ll do everything to make it even lower next season.
Kinhult is a finalist for the ANNIKA Award as well as the Player and Freshman of the Year awards by the Women’s Golf Coaches Association.
Wallin carded a 76 in the third round and finished her first NCAA Championship Finals appearance with a 10 over par total of 229. Her score on Monday included an eagle on Hole No. 7 – her team-leading third eagle of the season. Wallin also carded four birdies for the second consecutive round as she finished her final two rounds a three strokes over par. She was one of only 12 players in the 132-golfer field who carded at least one eagle during three rounds of stroke play at the 2019 NCAA Championship Finals.
Wallin finished her freshman year with a 72.77 stroke average – the ninth lowest single-season average in school history. Her stroke average ranks as the third lowest for a career in school history.
Florida State finished the 2019 season with two tournament championships (at the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate and the Evans Derby Experience), a second place finish at the ACC Championship (for the third consecutive season) and a second place finish at the NCAA Auburn Regional Championship (for the second consecutive season).