SUGAR GROVE, ILL. – Playing in miserable conditions, Nadine White of Campbell University shot an 11-over-par 83 and sits in a tie for 93rd place after Friday's first round of the NCAA Division I Women's Golf Championship at Rich Harvest Farms.
Ranked No.-85 in the nation by Golfstat with a 73.44 stroke average, White started at 8:25 a.m. and played the final 16 holes in rain and windy conditions that pushed the wind chill to around 40 degrees. With the wind blowing between 15 and 20 miles per hour, she still managed to make nine pars and a birdie on the par-72, 6343-yard layout.
White finished the day in front of seven golfers ranked in Golfstat's top-100. Among the players tied with White at 11-over are seventh-ranked Linnea Strom of Arizona State and eighth-ranked Martina Edberg of Cal State-Fullerton.
"To say that the conditions were unbelievably bad would be a huge understatement," said Campbell head coach John Crooks of White, who is competing in her third national championship tournament. "It started raining on the third hole and from there it was just a matter of if it was raining a little or a lot. It looked like the girls in the group lost feeling in their hands on the 13th or 14th hole, and it became a matter of survival, rather than thriving, from then on. What's most impressive is the fact that under conditions this tough, Nadine still made at least six putts 10 feet or longer for par. She's a champion and is that type of competitor."
Of the 132 players in the field, only co-leaders August Kim of Purdue and Elodie Van Dievoet of Michigan finished the round at even par (72).
No.-12 Northwestern sits atop the team leader board at 12-over 300, three strokes in front of 14th-ranked Kent State. Top-ranked Stanford is in a four-way tie for third at 23-over-par 311 along with No.-7 Arizona State, No.-17 Baylor and No.-25 Ohio State.
White will start Saturday's second round from the first tee at 12:55 p.m. Live scoring is available at Golfstat.com. Golf Channel will provide live coverage for the final three days of the championships May 22-24.
A senior from Brisbane, Australia, White earned an individual berth in the event by finishing in a tie for eighth place (73-73-72—218) May 8-10 at the NCAA Albuquerque Regional. She participated in the 2014 and 2015 NCAA Championships when Campbell qualified as a team.
The championship format consists of all 24 teams and 12 individuals completing 54 holes of stroke play. The top 15 teams along with the top nine individuals not on an advancing team will advance for one additional day of stroke play to determine the top eight teams for match play competition and the 72-hole stroke play individual champion. The top eight teams then compete in match play for the championship.
Both the NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Golf Championships will be held at Rich Harvest Farms and hosted for the first time by Northern Illinois University. The women's championship continues through May 24, followed by the men's championship, May 26-31.
Named one of America's 100 greatest golf courses by Golf Digest Magazine, Rich Harvest Farms was the site of NCAA Men's Regionals in 2007 and 2014. In addition, the 2009 Solheim Cup, 2015 Palmer Cup and 2015 WGA Western Amateur were all played at Rich Harvest Farms. The par-72 course will play to 6343 yards for the NCAA women's stroke play championship.
Ranked as the No.-1 Amateur in Australia and No.-79 in the world, White became just the fifth player in Campbell women's golf history to compete in four NCAA regional championships. White has led the Camels to Big South Championships three times in four years (2014, 2016-17), is a three-time Big South all-conference performer, and was the Big South golfer of the year in 2016.