Jay Drowns, UVU Marketing
UVU freshman Bailey Henley hits the ball out of the sand at Hobble Creek Golf Course in Springville.

In its final competition of the fall season, the Utah Valley University women’s golf team heads to Hot Springs Village, Arkansas, for the Little Rock Women’s Golf Classic at the Diamante Country Club.

The 54-hole tournament, hosted by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, will tee off on Sunday, Oct. 29, at 8:30 a.m. CT, and run through Tuesday, Oct. 31, with 18 holes to be played each day. Live scoring and updates can be followed at Golfstat.

“Our team is building on some early successes from this fall, and we have a strong, front-leading group that’s really doing some great things,” said UVU head coach Dr. Sue Nyhus. “Several of our players are in position to win the tournament individually if they’re having a good week. A good finish in this event would really cap off a great fall.”

Along with Utah Valley and host school Little Rock, teams participating in the tournament include Arkansas State, Central Arkansas, Houston Baptist, Jacksonville State, Louisiana-Monroe, Missouri State, Northern Iowa, Oral Roberts, Sam Houston State, Stephen F. Austin, UT Arlington, UTEP and WAC rival UT Rio Grande Valley.

The Wolverines enter Sunday with a ranking of 146, according to Golfstat.

UVU earned a fifth-place finish its last time out in the Pat Harbottle Invitational in Lakewood, Washington. The team was led by top-10 finishes from Ana Raga and Justine Lauer, while Carly Dehlin also finished in 16th place. Overall, Utah Valley shot a 63-over-par 927 throughout the course of the competition (307-309-311).

Raga, Lauer and Dehlin will compete for Utah Valley next week. They will be joined by sophomore Kaylee Shimizu and freshman Bailey Henley. Dehlin leads UVU with a 75.25 season scoring average, while Raga is close behind at 75.50.

“The fact that we’re going to Arkansas and trying to mix the fields up by playing some teams from the East Coast and (the) central region will help our ranking to be more accurate,” Nyhus said. “If we play well it will help our ranking significantly because we don’t get to play those teams very often. It’s critical for our program to branch out of the little bubble in the West we generally play in, and this will help us tremendously with that.”

Following the tournament in Arkansas, UVU will bring its fall competition schedule to a close. The Wolverines return to the course in February of 2018 when they travel to Phoenix, Arizona, for the GCU Invitational hosted by WAC foe Grand Canyon at the Grand Canyon University Golf Course on Feb. 24-25.