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Wittenberg Women Top Pre-Championship Poll

DePauw junior Larisa Luloff (L) & Wittenberg senior Jane Hopkinson-Wood (R) are two of the top contenders at the 2018 NCAC Women's Golf Championships
DePauw junior Larisa Luloff (L) & Wittenberg senior Jane Hopkinson-Wood (R) are two of the top contenders at the 2018 NCAC Women's Golf Championships

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The 2018 NCAC Women's Golf Championships will be contested this weekend, April 27-29, at Westbrook Country Club in Mansfield, Ohio, with Ohio Wesleyan University serving as the host institution. The event will consist of 54-total holes, with 18 holes being played, respectively, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 

Wittenberg, winners of the last three NCAC women’s golf championships, narrowly edged DePauw as the favorites in this year’s pre-championship poll following balloting by the league coaches. The Ohio Tigers earned three of the available first-place votes cast by the coaches for 33 total points, while the Indiana Tigers collected the final three first-place votes and finished second overall in the poll with 32 points. Denison was third overall with 25 points, followed by Wooster in fourth (17), Ohio Wesleyan in fifth (10) and Allegheny in sixth (9). 

The Wittenberg Tigers, who are under the leadership of first-year head coach Michael Leotta, enter the 2018 NCAC Golf Championships ranked 16th in the nation in the most recent GolfStat Top-25, while the DePauw Tigers are ninth in the country in the same rankings. Wittenberg has won two team events this season, winning its own Pat Clouse Invitational in early October, before capturing the team title earlier this spring at OWU’s Laura Bump Invitational. DePauw has claimed three tournament titles during the fall portion of the season, highlighted by winning a 36-hole championship preview event at Westbrook C.C. in mid October. Wittenberg senior Jane Hopkinson-Wood (Pottstown, PA/The Hill School) has once again led the charge for her squad this season with five total individual titles, winning medalist honors at Denison’s Lynn Schweizer Invitational, DePauw’s Dan Quayle Collegiate Classic, Wittenberg’s own Pat Clouse Invitational, the NCAC Fall Preview event at Westbrook C.C. and finally earning the top prize at OWU’s Laura Bump Invitational this spring. Hopkinson-Wood, who won the NCAC’s individual championship in 2016, is also one of the top Div. III players in the country this season as she ranks third overall in the GolfStat individual rankings with an adjusted scoring average of 73.49. Hopkinson-Wood is one of four players returning to the championship field this year that received first-team All-NCAC honors last year with a top-five finish in the individual standings. Hopkinson-Wood finished second overall in 2017 with a 229, followed by DePauw junior Larisa Luloff (Cary, IL/Cary-Grove) in third (236), while the duo of DePauw junior Rachele Miller (Bettendorf, IA/Pleasant Valley) and Wittenberg senior Brianna Yee (Las Vegas, NV/Faith Lutheran) finished as part of a three-way tie for fifth with 244 strokes each. In addition, Denison sophomore Emmy Timberlake (Charlottesville, VA/Charlottesville) returns to the field this spring after earning the 2017 NCAC Newcomer of the Year award as the top individual finisher at the championships in their first year of collegiate competition in eighth-place with 250 total strokes.


2018 North Coast Athletic Conference
Women's Golf
Pre-Championship Coaches' Polls
(first-place votes in parentheses, followed by total points)

1. Wittenberg (3) 33
2. DePauw (3) 32
3. Denison 25
4. Wooster 17
5. Ohio Wesleyan 10
6. Allegheny 9