May 21, 2010
NORMAN, Okla. - Oklahoma's Ellen Mueller finished her 2009-10 campaign in impressive fashion, shooting a 1-over-par 73 in the final round of the NCAA Championships in Wilmington, N.C., Friday.
Mueller finished the Championships in a tie for 61st place out of 126 competitors with a 72-hole total of 300 (+12) at the par-72, 6,368-yard Country Club of Landfall. She improved 13 spots after entering the day tied for 74th place.
"Although it wasn't the way I wanted to end the season, I'm really happy that I qualified for the National Championship," said Mueller.
OU head coach Veronique Drouin applauded the junior's efforts this week and on the year.
"Ellen had a great week at the NCAA Championships," said Drouin. "It was a good way to end our season. She's been working hard all year and I'm glad to see it pay off."
Mueller began her day on hole No. 10 and she registered birdies on holes 14 and 18. She parred the other seven holes to finish the back nine with an impressive 2-under 34.
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After making the turn, Mueller played the front nine consistent to her previous rounds. She recorded bogeys on holes 3, 4, and 8, the same totals she recorded in the second and third rounds.
Overall, Mueller played solid golf on 71 holes of the 72-hole tournament. On Thursday, a water hazard penalty on the par-3 16th hole led to a score of 8. If Mueller had managed to par the hole, she would have finished the tournament in the top-40.
Purdue edged out USC by one stroke to take home the team title with a 1-over-par 1,153. The individual championship went to Caroline Hedwall of Oklahoma State, who finished the tournament at 12 under par.
Mueller's season was a record-breaking one. She set the school standard for lowest season stroke average at 74.41. She also posted seven top-10 finishes in her 14 events of the season and was named to the 2009-10 All-Big 12 team. She finished in the top 25 in all but the NCAA Championships.
Mueller, who was also named to the ESPN the Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-District Second Team Friday, is hopeful her first NCAA Championships appearance won't be her last.
"l look forward to next year," she said Friday. "We have a great freshman class coming in and everyone is ready to work hard."