Illini fall short of first NCAA championships berth

Illini fall short of first NCAA championships berth

VERONA, Wis. — Sitting in a three-way tie heading into the Wednesday's final round, the No. 20 Illinois women's golf team finished seventh overall in the NCAA Madison Regional, falling one spot short of the program's first-ever championships berth.

Illinois finished with a 2-over 866 overall after three days, just one stroke behind sixth-place Northwestern and two strokes behind tied-for-fourth Ohio State and Arizona State.

While the Illini needed to remain in the top six to advance, their seventh-place finish is the best regional result in program history.

"They gave it everything they had," Illinois coach Renee Slone said. "We just weren't quite clicking on all cylinders, and that's really what you need if you're going to advance to the national championship."

Senior Grace Park fired a third-round 69 to pace the Illini, finishing with an three-round 215 that tied her for 11th overall as an individual.

Tristyn Nowlin and Chayanid Prapassarangkul both shot 218 and finished three strokes behind Park, while Bing Singhsumalee and Dana Gattone each shot 219 through three rounds.

Six Illini receive postseason honors

Six Illinois softball players earned All-Big Ten honors, including Kiana Sherlund as a unanimous first-team selection.

Redshirt junior Carly Thomas also joined Sherlund as a member of the first team, while senior Maddi Doane and junior Stephanie Abello each earned second-team nods.

Belle Loya was also named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team.

Junior pitcher and Arcola native Taylor Edwards also received Illinois' Big Ten Sportsmanship Award.