SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – No. 4 South Carolina fell in the match play quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship on Tuesday at Grayhawk Golf Club. The Gamecocks put the first point on the board but the Trojans prevailed in some tight matches down the stretch thanks to clutch putting.
Senior Mathlide Claisse was dominant in a 6&5 victory. She made the turn with a 5-up lead and sunk four birdies in 14 holes. The Paris, France, native ends her Carolina career on a high note with the match play victory. Claisse was a four-year starter and played in three NCAA Championships. She ends her career with a 73.64 scoring average, which is good for fifth-best all-time at South Carolina.
Senior Justine Fournand fell 2&1. She lost on the 17th hole after lipping out a par putt to extend things to 18. Sophomore All-American Louise Rydqvist also fell 2&1. She just missed a birdie putt on hole 17 to stay 1-down with two holes to play.
Fellow sophomore All-American Hannah Darling was making a comeback bid late in her match against Amari Avery. She was going to win at the par-5 seventh hole to pull things to 1-down with two holes to go, but her match was conceded as the Trojans got their third and decisive point up ahead at the par-3 eighth. Freshman Mia Sandtorv Lussand fell 3&2. She battled back after going 2-down to tie things with six holes to go but Southern Cal’s Catherine Park won three of the next four holes to seal a victory.
The Gamecocks finish the 2023 NCAA Championship T-5th, which ties 2012 (5th) and 2016 (T-5th) for the best showing all-time in program history. Carolina made its second match play appearance today and first since 2016.
NCAA Championship Quarterfinals – No. 4 South Carolina vs. No. 9 Southern Cal
Mathilde Claisse (SC) def. Malia Nam (Southern Cal), 6&5
Cindy Kou (Southern Cal) def. Justine Fournand (SC) , 2&1
Catherine Park (Southern Cal) def. Mia Sandtorv Lussand (SC), 3&2
Brianna Navarrosa (Southern Cal) def. Louise Rydqvist (SC), 2&1
Amari Avery (Southern Cal) def. Hannah Darling (SC), 1-up (match conceded after Trojans earned decisive third point)
Final Score: Southern Cal – 4 Gamecocks – 1
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