Oct. 19, 2009
By Zach Stipe, Media Relations Graduate Assistant
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- A day after sweeping first-place awards at the 13th annual Mercedes-Benz Women's Collegiate Championships, the Tennessee women's golf team added two more honors on Monday, as Golfweek tabbed the Lady Vols its National Team of the Week, and sophomore Nathalie Mansson was named Lady Vol Athlete of the Week.
Tennessee won the Mercedes-Benz, its home tournament, in dominating fashion at Fox Den Country Club over the weekend. UT jumped out to a 13-stroke lead after firing a 3-under 283 team total during Friday's opening round and never let off the gas en route to winning the competition by a tournament-record 19 strokes.
The Lady Vols' 4-over 868 54-hole total is the fourth-best team score in UT history and the third-best score ever at the Mercedes-Benz.
The victory was marked by cold, rainy and windy conditions, but the Big Orange outlasted an 18-team field that featured six other 2009 NCAA Championships participants and eight Golfstat Top 25 members.
This is the second time UT has captured Golfweek National Team of the Week honors. The Lady Vols also collected the award in March 2006 after decimating the field at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational in Honolulu, Hawaii, by 38 strokes with a school-record 855.
While Tennessee's team title was hardly ever in doubt on the final day, Mansson's individual title wasn't secured until the fifth playoff hole.
The sophomore from Stockholm, Sweden, carded three 71s for a 3-under 213 final score but was tied with Louisville's Laura Anderson after 54 holes.
The playoff, alternating between Nos. 10 and 18, ended on the fifth extra hole when Mansson two-putted for par. The victory is Mansson's first of her career and UT's 16th individual championships of all-time.
Mansson's score (3-under 213) was her best ever in relation to par and she led the tournament with 14 birdies. In three tournaments this fall, she already has six rounds of par or better and is carrying a team-best 72.11 stroke average.
Last season she set an Orange and White freshman record for average (73.79) and was named All-SEC Second Team and honorable mention All-America by Golfweek.
This is Mansson's second career Lady Vol Athlete of the Week award. She previously won the honor after tying for third at the NCAA East Regional last May.
The Tennessee women's golf team returns to action Oct. 26-27 at the Alamo Invitational in San Antono, Texas, where it will look to wrap up the fall portion of its schedule with back-to-back wins.