Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Arizona Women's Golf Travels to PING/ASU Invitational
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 31, 2005
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Teeing Off:  The Arizona women’s golf team will take the course April 1-3 in the ASU/PING Invitational before postseason play begins later in April. The Wildcats completed the UNLV Spring Invitational March 16, where they had a third-place finish.


The Course: The 2005 PING/ASU Invitational will be played on the Karsten Golf Course on the campus of Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz. The course is set across 6,230-yards and is a par 72.


The Field: ARIZONA, Arizona State, California, new Mexico, New Mexico State, Northern Arizona, Oregon, Oregon State, Pepperdine, San Jose State, Stanford, UCLA, USC, Texas, TCU, Tulsa and Washington.


The Schedule: 18 holes will be played each day with tee times beginning at 8 a.m. (MST) from tees No.1 and No. 10 for all three days. Second-round and third-round pairings are based on team total and individual total within the team.


Coming To You Live: Live scoring will be provided on


Last Time on the Course: The Arizona women's golf team finished in third after the final 18-holes at the UNLV Invitational. The Wildcats shot 52-over-par 916 to trail tournament champion Southern California by 21 strokes after the Women of Troy shot 31-under-par 895. Pepperdine shot 46-over-par 910 to place second. Tennessee and Michigan both shot 62-over-par 926 to tie for fourth.  Individually, junior Cassandra Kirkland won her first collegiate tournament after carding 220 (+4). The native of Saint-Nom-La-Breteche, France, held off Pepperdine’s Eileen Vargas by one stroke to capture the individual honors. Additionally, junior Lani Elston joined Kirkland in the top-five by shooting 225 (+9) to tie for fifth with Michigan’s Laura Olin.  Senior Mar Garcia and junior Whitney Welch tied for 30th at 21-over-par 237. Senior Miriam Kraschinski tied for 36th after she shot 23-over-par 239. Competing as an individual for Arizona, sophomore Rachel Gavin tied for 61st at 245 (+29).


Wildcat Lineup:

Golfer                          Year         Stroke Avg.     Top 10/20    Low Rnd.     Events

Lani Elston                    Jr.            75.00                1/1                    68                     8

Miriam Kraschinski        Sr.            76.42                0/0                    70                     8

Mar Garcia                    Sr.            77.24                0/1                    71                     8

Whitney Welch              Jr.            76.57                1/0                    71                     8         

Cassandra Kirkland        Jr.            73.76                3/1                    67                     8

Rachel Gavin*                So.           80.11                0/0                    75                     3

*Will compete as an individual


Allen’s thoughts on UNLV Tournament: "Our goal is to always put ourselves in a position where we have a chance to win going into the final round. After a poor start, we played better in the second round and were only five back heading into the final round.  USC played exceptional golf the first nine holes and built a lead that we could not catch."


Allen’s thoughts on Cassandra Kirkland: Cassandra has been close over the past three years to winning a college tournament so it was nice to see her finally be able to accomplish her goal. She joins a great list of Wildcats that have won college tournaments."


Title Town: Junior Cassandra Kirkland won her first collegiate tournament at the UNLV Spring Invitational. Kirkland shot 220 (+4) to hold off Pepperdine’s Eileen Vargas by one shot. This is the first time a Wildcat has won a tournament since May 7, 2004, when Erica Blasberg won the Central Regional individual medalist honors.


Effective Elston: Junior Lani Elston has continued her success. After a record-setting tournament at the 2005 Wildcat Invitational, Elston tied for fifth (225) at the UNLV Spring Invitational. 


Wildcat Coaching Staff:  A seven-year college coaching veteran, Greg Allen has led the Arizona Wildcats to nine tournament championships in just five years at the helm of the program. Included in the team’s accomplishments under Allen are the 2001 and 2002 Pac-10 Conference Championships, a national runner-up finish and a 20-stroke victory at the 2001 NCAA West Regional. Allen, hired in July 2000, came to Arizona from the University of Texas, where he was the assistant coach for the Longhorn’s men’s golf team. Prior to coaching at Texas, Allen served as Director of Tournament Operations with the American Junior Golf Association. Allen graduated from Murray State University in 1993.

Shelly Haywood, hired in September 2004, assists Allen. Haywood played collegiately at New Mexico State, where she was a two-time All-Big West Conference performer. For the past 11 years, Haywood was the assistant golf professional at Tucson Country Club.


2004-05 Women’s Golf Roster


NAME                           CLASS                         HOMETOWN

Katie Christy                 Senior                           Tucson, Ariz.

Lani Elston                    Junior ?- RS                    Spokane, Wash.

Mar Garcia                    Senior                           Borriol, Spain

Rachel Gavin                 Sophomore ?- RS            Tucson, Ariz.

Cassandra Kirkland        Junior                            Saint-Nom-La-Breteche, France

Miriam Kraschinski         Senior                           Whitianga, New Zealand

Whitney Welch              Junior                            Las Vegas, Nev.


Greg Allen, Head Coach

Shelly Haywood, Assistant Coach

Tim Lynch, Manager