The Dale McNamara Invitational, hosted by the University of Tulsa featured nine teams; BYU, Cincinnati, Colorado State, Fresno State, Kansas, Missouri State, New Mexico State, Oral Roberts and Tulsa. The tournament is named after legendary Tulsa golf coach Dale McNamara who coached for 26 years at Tulsa. During his time at Tulsa, he took the women’s golf to national prominence by winning four national championships.
This is the fifth time that Tulsa has hosted this tournament and the 20th tournament that women’s team has hosted, though this is the first tournament in the spring season. After the win this weekend, TU has won 10 out of the 20 tournaments that they have hosted.
The win was the first time a freshman won an individual title for the Golden Hurricane since Kristina Merkle won the 2010 Johnnie Imes Invitational, the first overall victory for an individual since Merkle won the 2013 Notre Dame Clover Cup and the first team title since the 2013 UAB Fall Beach Blast.
Head Coach Emilee Lein-Gille said after the victory, “It feels good. I knew the girls were good enough to win. I knew they had the heart and could win, but it was just a matter of finally making it happen. The last couple of tournaments we put ourselves in contention, and I’m glad for that because it gave us a chance to know what it felt like to be in contention. At the last tournament, we were in a position to win, but didn’t play well the final round. I think that helped us so much for this round because we were ready. I’m proud of them.”
Senior Nadia Majidizadeh — who finished in ninth place individually — had the best score in the final round with a one-under par 69. She had four birdies on the fourth, seventh, 16th and 17th holes. Majidizadeh was coming off her best personal finish the week before when she took third place in the John Kirk Panther Invitational, which was her sixth top-25 performance of the season.
“It was an awesome day for Nadia today. She struggled the first two rounds, and she was pretty disappointed because it was a home tournament. She’s been such a superstar for us. It was so good for her to finish on that note. I’m so happy she can be a part of a win as a senior playing in her last official regular season tournament,” Klein-Gille said.
Joining Bruner and Majidizadeh in the top-20 were sophomores Anneke Strobach (13) and Olivia Jackson (18) who finished with scores of 225 and 227 respectively.
Junior Nicole Marquardt rounded out the Golden Hurricane tournament team with a score of 239 for 41st place in the tournament. Three golfers competed as individuals in the tournament as well, meaning that they were not involved in the team title, but still competed for the team championship. Johanna Samuelsson, Taylor Dobson and Mackenzie Medders competed.
After the win, Bruner, who is a true freshman, was named the American Athletic Conference Women’s Golf Athlete of the Week. This was the first time this season that the Golden Hurricane have won this accolade.
Tulsa is competing at the American Athletic Conference Championships this week at the Hammock Beach – Conservatory Course, their final scheduled tournament of the season.