Annika Award Watch List: March 7, 2014

USC's Annie Park

Women's Rankings »

RankNameSchoolRating
1SooBin KimWashington  65.91 
2Alison LeeUCLA  68.50 
3Annie ParkUSC  68.55 
4Leona MaguireDuke  69.18 
5Celine BoutierDuke  69.53 

Women's Team Rankings »

RankNameRatingEvents
1Washington 70.16 
2South Carolina 70.57 
3Duke 71.13 
4Arkansas 71.62 
5Mississippi State 71.64 

As the spring season progresses, Golfweek is monitoring the race for the inaugural Annika Award. An award update will be posted each Friday on Golfweek.com.

• • •

Now fully a month into the college golf season, the following players are firmly on the Annika Award Watch List. Players not listed here are not excluded from consideration, however, and can still play their way into contention in the spring.

FAVORITES

Annie Park, USC

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 1
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 8
  • Scoring average: 70.5
  • Best finish this season: Won (Northrop Grumman Regional Challenge)
  • In a few words… Park succeeds because she manages her game so well mentally. The sophomore, who works with instructor Sean Foley, is very aware of her game and what it takes to get better. She could be a shoe-in on this list because of last year’s Player of the Year performance alone, but Park is living up to high expectations this year.

Alison Lee, UCLA

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 2
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 1
  • Scoring average: 70.6
  • Best finish this season: Won (Betsy Rawls Invitational, Stanford Intercollegiate)
  • In a few words… Lee’s game continues to trend upward, which is a pattern that started over the summer with a trip to the semifinals of the U.S. Women’s Amateur. Confidence is the key to Lee’s game, and she should have plenty after two fall victories.

Stephanie Meadow, Alabama

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 4
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 4
  • Scoring average:
  • Best finish this season:
  • In a few words… A strong candidate for Player of the Year last year, Meadow has been at the forefront of Alabama’s program for her entire career in Tuscaloosa. She’s now eight victories deep, and a good pick any time she tees it up because of her poise and accuracy.

Mariah Stackhouse, Stanford

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 5
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 5
  • Scoring average: 70.65
  • Best finish this season: Won (Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational, UC Irvine Invitational)
  • In a few words… Stackhouse has an unusual mix of raw talent and drive, but becomes more competitive as her strategy and mental game continue to improve – as evidenced by her recent UC Irvine Invitational victory (which also merits Stackhouse an exemption into the LPGA Kia Classic later this month).

• • •

IN POSITION

Kyung Kim, USC

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 6
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 3
  • Scoring average: 71
  • Best finish this season: Won (Dale McNamara Fall Preview, Bruin/Wave Invitational)
  • In a few words… Kim has shown a vast amount of potential since she was a junior golfer, but all the pieces seem to have come together this season. Her Fall Preview win was a great confidence boost at the beginning of the season, and she was one of the hottest players in college golf this week after her Bruin/Wave victory.

Yu Liu, Duke

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 3
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 2
  • Scoring average: 71.67
  • Best finish this season: Second, Landfall Tradition
  • In a few words… A quiet freshman who has transitioned well to college. From the team perspective, Liu has filled big shoes for Duke in the absence of Lindy Duncan.

Ashlan Ramsey, Clemson

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 8
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 6
  • Scoring average: 71.17
  • Best finish this season: Won (Lady Paladin, Ruth’s Chris Tar Heel)
  • In a few words… Was successful in turning a stellar amateur summer into a notable freshman season for her start-up Clemson team. She gathered no rust over winter break, and is still leading Clemson through the spring. Most notable about Ramsey is the improvement in her game over the past few years -- that’s a sign of a coachable player.

• • •

TO WATCH

Sophia Popov, USC

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 7
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 10
  • Scoring average: 71.5
  • Best finish this season: Second (Stanford Intercollegiate)
  • In a few words… Popov continues to be a strong player and a team leader for the Trojans. The German has compiled five victories (which ties a USC record) so far in her career. Annika hardware would be a very suitable end to her time in Los Angeles.

Grace Na, Pepperdine

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 11
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 28
  • Scoring average: 72.14
  • Best finish this season: Won (Golfweek Women’s Conference Challenge)
  • In a few words… Na continues to grow and mature on the Wave roster and tunes in to the most minute details about course layout and conditions. Another victory could put her firmly in the Annika conversation. She’s a vital part of a Pepperdine team likely to figure heavily into postseason.

Julie Yang, Oklahoma State

  • Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 14
  • Golfstat head-to-head ranking: 22
  • Scoring average: 71
  • Best finish this season: Second (Dale McNamara Fall Preview, Windy City Collegiate)
  • In a few words… A talent with vast playing experience, from Asia to Europe to LPGA Q-School. Yang came close at the Fall Preview and Windy City, but is still missing the major victory that will define her season.
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