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Play Concludes at Big Sky Women’s Golf Championship: Senior Taylor Viquelia Paces Thunderbirds

By: Bryson Lester, Assistant Director of Strategic Communication SUU

BOULDER CITY, Nev. – The Thunderbird women’s golf team wrapped up play at the 2017 Big Sky Women’s Golf Championship on Sunday afternoon, ending play in sixth place as a team at Boulder Creek Golf Club.

Senior Taylor Viquelia was the top player on the leaderboard for the Thunderbirds, finishing the tournament in a tie for 11th. She shot a three-day total of 230 (79, 76, 75) in her final event as a Thunderbird.

“It’s really bittersweet, I can’t really describe it,” she said following the round. “It just doesn’t feel real yet, because I’ve been doing this for four years now.”

SUU head coach Richard Church said the impact Viquelia had on the T-Bird women’s golf program will be felt for years to come.

“Taylor has been a leader on and off the golf course,” he said. “She’s just one of the most enjoyable people to ever be around.”

When it came to her round, Viquelia said she was satisfied with how she played at the tournament.

“I was happy with how I played, some of my putts just weren’t dropping,” she said. “I was striking the ball really well, as I have been all week, I just couldn’t drop the putts.”

Kyla Smith had the best round for the Thunderbirds on Sunday, shooting an even-par 72 to bring her three-day total to 232 (85, 75, 72). That score put her in a tie for 18th place on the leaderboard.

Miranda Reyes was only one shot behind Smith on Sunday, shooting a 73 and finishing play in a tie for 37th and fourth for SUU. Reyes showed a lot of improvement over the weekend, after shooting a 90 in the first round.

“It felt like I was three different players,” Reyes said about the improvements she was able to make each round. “I think slowly I just regained focus, and today was probably the best day I really solidified my game plan. It was a good day, I’m happy.

Nicole Jones posted a 79 on Sunday, bringing her three-day total to 234 (80, 75, 79). She finished in third for the Thunderbirds and in a tie for 24th overall.

Freshman Poy Prasurtwong shot an 81 on Sunday, bringing her total score to a 245 (79, 85, 81). That put her in a tie for 45th on the leaderboard.

As a team the Thunderbirds finished in sixth place with a 927 (323, 305, 299), showing big improvements as the weekend went on.

“This team has been really good at finishing off the last round of a golf tournament strong,” Church said following Sunday’s action. “All year we’ve gotten off to slow starts in the first round of tournaments, which we need to work on down the road and as coaches figure out why that’s happening. But, this team has no quit in them. They get better as the tournament goes on, and in almost every tournament this year our last round has been our best round of the tournament.”

The Sacramento State Hornets were able to claim the team title in a playoff against the Idaho Vandals. Both the Hornets and the Vandals finished 56 holes with a score of 900, forcing a playoff.

“There’s some real depth in the Big Sky this year and we just dug too deep of a hole to come back against teams of this caliber,” Church said.

Northern Arizona’s Sofia Anokhina, who was the Player of the Year in the Big Sky, won the individual title by shooting a 218 (72, 71, 75).