The No. 4 UCLA women’s golf team’s season came to a screeching halt at the NCAA regional May 10.
Before that, the Bruins were poised for their best season since 2011, when coach Carrie Forsyth led them all the way to the national championship.
The Bruins finished either first or second in their five tournaments leading up to NCAAs. They had knocked off now-No. 10 USC in the final round of the Gifford Great 8, and beaten now-No. 1 Arizona State at the Anuenue Spring Break Classic in Hawaii by 17 strokes.
Then UCLA dominated the Pac-12 championships. Sophomore Lilia Vu was the best performer at the tournament by six strokes, and the second-best golfer was a Bruin, too – freshman Mariel Galdiano.
The pattern of success would end there. The Bruins finished eighth at the Lubbock Regional in Texas and didn’t advance to NCAAs.
Without a trip to the NCAA Tournament in Sugar Grove, Illinois, a high point of the 2016-2017 season was Vu’s record-setting year.
The sophomore was named Pac-12 Golfer of the Month in both March and April. She finished first individually at the conference championship, which was her fourth consecutive tournament win. No other athlete in the history of the UCLA women’s golf program has ever won four in a row.
Despite her personal accomplishments, Vu will not get a chance to compete in the NCAA Individual Championship due to her performance at the regional. In order to advance to individuals, she would have had to be a top-three golfer whose team did not make NCAAs. In that specific category, she finished fifth.
The only other Pac-12 Golfer of the Month award that UCLA earned was given to Bronte Law, who won the award in November. In October, she had the best individual score at the Stanford Intercollegiate, a tournament which the Bruins also took as a team.
Law earned LPGA Partial Status in the fall and forwent the remainder of her senior season last fall, opting to play professionally instead.