Maguire, Duke claim NCAA South Bend Regional titles

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SOUTH BEND, IND. –  Led by Leona Maguire, the Duke Blue Devils swept both the individual and team titles at the 2015 NCAA Women’s Golf South Bend Regional played at Warren Golf Course on Saturday.

It was the ninth time in school history and the second time over the last three years that the Blue Devils claimed an NCAA regional championship.

The defending national-champion Blue Devils now advance to the 2015 NCAA Women’s Golf Championship for the 27th time in school history and the 20th time out of the last 21 years.

The 2015 NCAA Championship will take place from May 22-27 at the Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla.

“It feels great to win this late in the season,” Duke head coach Dan Brooks said.

“Now we can turn our focus to nationals.”

Duke freshman Leona Maguire claimed the individual title with a 54-hole finish of 4-under-par, 212, became just the fifth Blue Devil to win a regional title.

She joined Anna Grzebien (2005), Leigh Anne Hardin (2002), Virada Nirapathpongporn (2001) and Beth Bauer (1999 – tied first) in doing so.

Maguire, who is a native of Cavan, Ireland, is just the third Duke freshman golfer to win the title as well – along with Nirapathpongporn and Bauer.

“It is great,” commented Maguire on the victory.

“To get another win is a bonus and obviously to get the team win was big today. We have been really working towards regionals and nationals all year, so it is really nice the whole team came together at this time and got the win.”

As a team, Duke carded rounds of 288, 289 and 296 for a three-day score of 9-over-par, 873.

The Blue Devils won by three strokes over Wake Forest (876), while UC Davis (884), Arizona (886), Tulane (888) and Purdue (888) were the other teams advancing to the NCAA Championship.

Rounding out the top 10 were Kentucky (892), Notre Dame (894), Kent State (896) and Harvard (899).