Lauren Stephenson of Lexington, S.C., has given a verbal commitment to play college golf at Clemson. Stephenson, Golfweek's No. 12-ranked junior golfer in the Class of 2015, attends Lexington High School and made other unofficial visits to Georgia and Tennessee.
“When I visited Clemson, I fell in love with the campus, facilities and coach J.T. Horton," Stephenson said. "I really liked how the golf facilities are on campus and everything is so close, making it easier to get to practice. I am also excited about the players that are already committed. I think Coach Horton is putting together a championship team, and I am looking forward to being a part of it."
Clemson's women's program will debut in the fall of 2013.
“I am excited about making history at Clemson as part of a brand new program," Stephenson said. "We will set records that the players who come after us will try to break.”
Stephenson won the 2012 AJGA Golf Pride Junior Classic, and added third-place finishes at the AJGA Girls Championship and the AJGA Hank Haney IJGA Junior Open. She was featured in the Dec. 12 issue of Sports Illustrated magazine's "Faces in ...
Maty Monzingo has given a verbal commitment to play for Texas State in the fall of 2013. Monzingo is a senior at Byron Nelson High School in Trophy Club, Texas.
Monzingo also took unofficial visits to SMU, Texas A&M, Stephen F. Austin and Oklahoma, but decided on Texas State because it felt like a good fit. She said she fell in love with the campus, location and the weather, and is excited to play for head coach Mike Akers.
“He is really upbeat, a great recruiter, and is a neat guy,” Monzingo said. “He is intense, success-driven and passionate about having Texas State be the top-ranked team in the country.”
Monzingo recently was the low junior qualifier at the Texas Women’s Amateur. She was the runner-up at the Texas UIL 4A State High School Championship.
Katie Page, who plays for Sacred Heart Academy in Louisville, Ky., has given a verbal commitment to play college golf for SMU. Page is Golfweek’s top-ranked junior girl in Kentucky. She also made unofficial visits to Kentucky, Louisville, Illinois, Northwestern and Florida State.
Page said she chose SMU because it was a good fit academically and for golf.
“I also feel very comfortable with Coach (Jeanne) Sutherland, and I’m honored to be a part of the team she is building at SMU,” Page said. “With her knowledge and passion for the game, SMU’s top-notch facilities, and the great weather in Dallas, I believe I’ll have all of the resources I need to be successful on and off the course.”
Page helped lead her high school team to the 2011 Kentucky State Championship. She was second at the North & South Junior earlier this summer and fifth at the Bubba Conlee. Page also had two top-10 finishes this year in AJGA events, and four last year.
Isabella Skinner has given a verbal commitment to first-year Georgia head coach Josh Brewer. Skinner, who plays for West Forsyth High School in Cumming, Ga., will join the Bulldogs' roster in the fall of 2014.
Skinner also took unofficial visits to North Carolina, Auburn and Illinois. Her decision came down to Georgia and North Carolina.
“The decision was difficult for me because all of the programs I visited were amazing,” Skinner said. “In the end, my excitement about Coach Brewer’s vision for the program, the incredible facilities at Georgia and it being close to my family help to make my decision.”
Skinner advanced to match play at the U.S. Girls’ Junior earlier this summer before falling in the first round. She won the HJGT Chateau Elan Junior Shootout and the HJGT Upstate Junior Classic earlier this year, and won last year’s AJGA Junior All-Star at Hilton Head. Skinner had two aces in the final round of the 2012 Carolinas-Georgia Junior Championship to finish second.
Brooke McDougald has given a verbal commitment to play golf for TCU in the fall of 2015. McDougald made her decision after also taking unofficial visits to Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, SMU and Texas Tech.
McDougald, a sophomore at The Woodlands High School in The Woodlands, Texas, called TCU the total package, and an especially good fit as the Horned Frogs join the Big 12.
“It’s a great school and everyone I have met there has been very friendly,” she said. “I really wanted to stay in Texas because I’m a true Texas girl. It’s three and a half hours from home, which is perfect, and I absolutely love the coaches.”
During her freshman year on The Woodlands’ women’s golf team, McDougald earned second-team all-state honors at the 5A level. She also qualified for the U.S. Girls’ Junior and finished T-61 in stroke play but lost a playoff for a spot on the match-play bracket.
Paige Lee of Folsom, Calif., has given a verbal commitment to UC Davis. Lee, ranked No. 13 in the Class of 2013, made unofficial visits to California, Arizona, UC Irvine and Oregon before deciding on UC Davis.
Lee cites the team chemistry, beautiful campus and proximity to her home as several factors that set UC Davis apart.
“My decision became crystal clear after I met with coach Anne Walker,” Lee said. “I know that Coach Walker will guide me to reach my goals and take me to the top. She’s an incredible coach and person.”
In 2012, Lee tied for third at the AJGA Under Armour/Gary Woodland Championship and finished T4 at the AJGA Winn Grips/Heather Farr Classic. Lee won the 2011 Golfweek West Coast Invitational and finised in the top 10 at the 2011 AJGA ANNIKA Invitational. In 2011, she also competed in the U.S. Womens’ Amateur and was named the Northern California Player of the Year by the JGANC.
Katie Sharp of Kendallville, Ind., has verbally committed to Michigan State for the fall of 2013. Sharp, a junior at East Noble High School, is the No. 5-ranked girl in Indiana, according to the Golfweek/Sagarin Junior Rankings.
Before deciding on Michigan State, Sharp also made unofficial visits to Iowa, Indiana, Kansas State, Illinois, Xavier, Ohio State, Evansville, Kentucky and Wake Forest.
“I was fortunate to make several visits to some outstanding universities, but in the end the coaches, golf program and academic opportunities at Michigan State was the best fit for me.”
Sharp won the 2011 Hoosier Junior Championship, and was medalist at the Indiana Girls Junior. She was runner-up medalist at the Women’s Western Junior and qualified for the 2010 PGA Junior.
Kacie Komoto, ranked No. 26 in the Class of 2013, has given a verbal commitment to play college golf at Northwestern.
Komoto, who is from Honolulu, made unofficial visits to Northwestern, Washington and Oregon.
“Coach (Emily) Fletcher, Coach (Beth) Miller, academic advisers and the team . . . all made me feel confident that I would be able to meet both my academic goals and golfing goals there,” Komoto said.
Komoto, who attends Punahou School in Honolulu, qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur in 2010. She competed in the U.S. Girls' Junior in 2010 and 2011, advancing to match play. She won the 2011 AJGA Webb Simpson Championship.
Jordan Ferreira has given a verbal commitment to play college golf for Notre Dame. Ferriera also made unofficial visits to Wake Forest, Northwestern, North Carolina, California, Virginia, Ohio State and Vanderbilt. Her final decision was between Notre Dame and Wake Forest.
Ferreira, of University Place, Wash., said she was most attracted to Notre Dame because of the academics, and had the opportunity to meet coaches Susan Holt and Kyle Lynne Veltri along with teammates and professors during her campus visits.
“The tradition at Notre Dame is unrivaled, and to be able to attend (Notre Dame) is such a privilege,” she said. “Coaches Holt and Veltri have assembled great recruiting classes the past few years and I cannot wait to go to South Bend and compete.”
Ferreira was named the 2011 Junior Girl Player of the Year by the Washington State Golf Association. She also finished T-7 or better in all five AJGA starts last year and qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur. Most recently, Ferreira finished T-14 at the AJGA Annika Invitational.
Sammie Lee of Winter Park, Fla., has given a verbal commitment to play college golf at Georgia. Before deciding to become a Bulldog, Lee also made unofficial visits to Vanderbilt, Florida and Tulane.
After the visits, Lee decided that Georgia “had the best of everything.”
“I love the coaches, the girls on the team, the town, the campus and the golf facilities,” she said. “I know that I will have a wonderful experience at Georgia, while also getting a good education and playing on one of the top teams in the nation.”
Lee, who attends Lake Highland Prep in Orlando, Fla., recently finished eighth at the AJGA’s Annika Invitational. She won the Lockton Kansas City Junior over the summer, and had three other top-10 finishes in AJGA events in 2011.
Gabriella Then has given a verbal commitment to USC. Then, a junior at Upland High School in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., also made unofficial visits to Duke, UCLA, Arizona and North Carolina.
Then, a Rolex first-team All-American, said a big reason for her choosing USC was its location. The campus is close to home, and Then said she wasn’t too interested in leaving Southern California weather.
“As I was touring the campus and taking in the scene, it suited my personality well: big city, lots of people, etc.,” Then said. “I felt as though I would make a good candidate for the women’s golf team and make a difference.”
Then won the Rolex Tournament of Champions last year and qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open. She advanced to the quarterfinals at the U.S. Girls’ Junior before falling to eventual champion Ariya Jutanugarn.
Samantha Wagner of Windermere, Fla., has given a verbal commitment to play college golf for Florida. Wagner took no other unofficial visits, and the 15-year-old said she has been interested in playing for the Gators for about five years.
Wagner, who has her eye on an eventual professional golf career, chose Florida because she thinks it will help her reach that goal.
“I picked Florida because I really like Coach Jan (Dowling) and Coach Emily (Bastel),” she said. “I know they will help me excel in my golf game and achieve everything that I want to achieve. I love the golf and training facilities at Florida.”
Wagner recently transferred from Windermere Prep to Florida Virtual School, and she hopes to graduate high school a year early, in 2014.
Wagner finished T-14 at the AJGA’s Annika Invitational in January, where a second-round 67 gave her a share of the lead entering the final round. She has five other career top-5 finishes in AJGA events, including one win in 2009. Wagner also qualified for the 2011 U.S. Women’s Amateur, and was the next alternate for the U.S. Women’s Open.
Sophia Chen of Newbury Park, Calif., has given a verbal commitment to play college golf at Boston College.
Chen made unofficial visits to Boston College, Georgetown, Penn, Princeton, Michigan and North Carolina, and was receiving interest from many others.
“I am so grateful to be studying at one of the top academic institutions in the country,” Chen said. “I am also excited that I will be able to compete in the ACC, one of the strongest conferences in the country. Boston College has a beautiful campus as well as a fantastic athletic training facility. The coaching staff and teammates are great.”
Chen posted a pair of top-10 finishes in AJGA events this past summer including a fifth place showing at the Coca-Cola Junior Championship at Boyne Highlands. Chen also won an FCWT event.
Maggie Neece of Colleyville, Texas, has given a verbal commitment to play college golf at Oklahoma. Neece also made unofficial visits to SMU, Arkansas and TCU before deciding to become a Sooner.
“There are three things you look at while looking at colleges: coaches, team and the university,” Neece said. “Oklahoma had all three of those.
“The coaches (head coach Veronique Drouin and assistant Gerrod Chadwell) believed in me from the very start of the recruiting process. They work so well together, and they will both help to excel in my golf game as well as mental and physical strength. It's such a privilege to be able to play for Oklahoma, and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for me there. With the amazing facilities, coaching staff, team and university, I can only improve.”
Neece has qualified for two U.S Girls’ Juniors and has four top-10 finishes in AJGA events.
Alexandra Kaui of Las Vegas has given a verbal commitment to Oklahoma. Kaui also made unofficial visits to UNLV, Arizona and Oregon before deciding to become a Sooner.
Kaui said she thinks playing collegiate golf at Oklahoma will help prepare her for a career as a professional golfer. She was attracted to all aspects of the school.
“What drew me to Oklahoma University was the great academic program, with excellent facilities, nearby home course, separate practice range and short-game facility, brand new dorms, and last but not least the coaching staff,” she said.
Kaui is a Rolex All-American, and she won two AJGA events in 2011: the Las Vegas Junior Open and the Genesis Junior Championship.