Clemson, S.C. — Clemson heads south to Florida for its second tournament of the spring season this weekend. Kelley Hester’s Tigers will be among 13 teams in the field for the Sun Trust Gator Invitational at the Mark Bostick Country Club in Gainesville, Florida. The 54-hole tournament will start Saturday, March 9 with 36 holes and will conclude on Sunday, March 10 with the final 18 holes.
Clemson is coming off its first tournament of the year, as the Tigers opened the season at the ICON Invitational on Feb. 25-26. Alice Hewson picked up her fourth career individual medalist honor with a nine-under par 207, leading Clemson to a tie for fifth in the 15-team event.
Host school Florida is eighth in the nation according to Golfstat. The 13-team field is made up of seven schools inside the top 50 with Clemson ranked 20th, and ACC foe Miami at 24.
Clemson’s lineup for Florida includes Hewson, who leads the team in stroke average (71.71) and rounds under par (7). The senior from England also has three rounds in the 60’s and 36 birdies, 14 coming from ICON Invitational.
Freshmen Gracyn Burgess, Alexandra Swayne and Ivy Shepherd will make up the middle of the lineup for Hester. This is the first tournament of the spring for Burgess who had the fourth best stroke average of the fall with a 74.36 figure. Swayne has a 76.00 stroke average for her 14 rounds.
Shepherd, a native of Peachtree City, Ga. has a 71.93 stroke average this year and is ranked 48th in the nation according to Golfstat. She also leads the team in birdies (49), and rounds in the 60s (5).
Ana Paula Valdes will round out the Clemson lineup in Florida. The junior from Morelia, Mexico won her first collegiate tournament this fall with co-medalist honors at the Battle at the Beach. Valdes enters the weekend with a 72.57 average, third best on the team.
Sophomore Callista Rice will be playing in the tournament as an individual. She and Swayne both finished with a 233 at the ICON Invitational. Rice had a career best 12 birdies at the ICON Invitational, second among Clemson golfers.
Live scoring will be available on golfstat.com.