Women's countdown: No. 3 UCLA
We are counting down the top 30 women's teams heading into the fall college season.
• • •
2012-13 Golfweek rank: 5
Go-to girl: Junior Erynne Lee
Season outlook: The Bruins will succeed again this season if they can rekindle their nice-girl team dynamic with a different cast. Among freshmen Alison Lee, Yvonne Zheng, Bronte Law and Northwestern transfer Brittany Mai, someone must fill the reliable roles left vacant by Tiffany Lua and Lee Lopez.
Those freshmen likely will be the big story for UCLA this season. Lee’s arrival on campus has been much anticipated. She closed out her junior career in August with a trip to the semifinals at the U.S. Women’s Amateur and a spot on the U.S. Junior Solheim Cup team. Law played for Europe in the Junior Solheim, and the England native also turned heads at last year’s Curtis Cup. If she adapts well to Southern California, she’ll be a big addition. Zheng, from China, has picked up the game quickly in the four years she has been playing. UCLA head coach Carrie Forsyth said Zheng's ballstriking is reminiscent of Lua’s.
Those youngsters join a core that includes senior Ani Gulugian, a member of UCLA's 2011 NCAA Championship team, and junior Erynne Lee, who has been the Bruins' most consistent scorer the past two seasons. Sophomore Louise Ridderstrom played every tournament last spring, and that experience should serve her well this season.
– Julie Williams