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OU Women's Golf Captures Big 12 Championship In Record Fashion

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Credit: Big 12 Conference Credit: Big 12 Conference
AUSTIN, Texas -

The 13th-ranked University of Oklahoma women's golf team won the 2014 Big 12 Championship on Sunday, firing a final-round 278 (-10) to win the nine-team event by 17 shots at the par-72 University of Texas Golf Club in Austin, Texas.

The Sooners' three-round 861 (-3) shattered the previous Big 12 Championship record of 872 (+8) set by Texas in 2011. The conference title is the sixth in program history, OU's third in the 18-year history of the Big 12 and its second in the last three years.

OU led the tournament from start to finish and got stellar contributions from all five of its players. Each finished in the top 12 of the 44-person field.

OU senior Chirapat Jao-Javanil secured the individual Big 12 title by recording a three-day 209 (-7). Jao-Javanil, who finished second in the event in 2012, recorded seven birdies on Sunday en route to a 4-under 68 and a two-shot win over Texas' Natalie Karcher and Kansas' Yupaporn Kawinpakorn.

Jao-Javanil's victory marked the sixth of her career, breaking a school record. She became OU's fifth individual conference champion and second since the formation of the Big 12 (Kendall Dye was a co-champion in 2009). Her three-round 209 fell one stroke shy of the Big 12 Championship record set by Texas' Madison Pressell in 2011.

"It was fun," Jao-Javanil said. "I came close two years ago and I learned from that to stay patient, stay confident and let things happen. I felt like I didn't make any mistakes mentally and I kept scoring when I needed to."

Senior Kaitlyn Rohrback and freshman Alexandra Kaui tied for sixth place, each carding a 217 (+1). Kaui saved her best round for last, firing a 68 (-4) on the day and playing all but one hole at par or better. She holed out for eagle on the par-5 ninth hole, draining a 71-yard approach shot with her 54-degree wedge. Rohrback shot a day-three 73 (+1) and played 16 par-or-better holes. It was her best finish of the season.

Sooner Emily Collins finished in eighth place, recording a 219 (+3). The senior registered three birdies against just one bogey for a final-round 70.

OU's Anne-Catherine Tanguay turned in her best round of the tournament on Sunday, logging an even-par 72 for a three-day 222 (+6). The senior tied for 12th place.

Jao-Javanil, Kaui, Rohrback and Collins each made the Big 12's all-tournament team by virtue of their top-10 finishes.

Fifth-year Sooner head coach Veronique Drouin-Luttrell said she was thrilled with the team's performance.

"We played so solid today to finish the final round," Drouin-Luttrell said. "This was just so much fun and it solidifies everything that they've done and worked for. I'm really proud of everything we've accomplished together. We can't wait to see where we go for (NCAA) regionals and to continue to chase our goals."

Oklahoma will participate in NCAA Regional play May 8-10. The Sooners will learn where they'll be sent (Stillwater, Okla., Tallahassee, Fla., or Cle Elum, Wash.) on Monday. The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Championships selections will be announced live via the Golf Channel during "Golf Central," which will air from 5 to 6 p.m. CT. The show will also be streamed live on the Golf Channel website and posted afterward on the NCAA website (www.ncaa.com).

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