Lady Vols advance to NCAA Championships

OPELIKA, Ala. (WVLT)-- The University of Tennessee women's golf team advanced to the NCAA Championships after qualifying as one of the top-6 teams in the NCAA Auburn Regional.

This will be the 14th trip to the NCAA Championships in program history and the 12th time in the Judi Pavon era the Lady Vols advance to the NCAA Championships. They will be one of 24 teams competing at the championships in Fayetteville, Ark. from May 17-22.

UT carded its lowest round of the tournament on Wednesday, turning in a third round score of 287 (-1). Their final round help Tennessee finish above the cutline by three strokes.

En route to advancing to the NCAA Championships, Tennessee finished ahead of six top-50 teams on the leaderboard including No. 22 Furman.

The Lady Vols were helped by under par rounds from junior Micheala Williams and senior Ariana Macioce, who both fired final rounds of 71 (-1).

Williams bookended her tournament with under-par scores as she also had an opening round 70 (-2) on Monday. For the week, Williams finished tied for 13th at 1-over-par. This marks the seventh consecutive top-25 finish for Williams.

This will be the second consecutive NCAA Championship appearance for Williams, who qualified as an individual last season.

Macioce moved up 19 spots on the individual leaderboard on Wednesday to finish tied for 33rd.

The top finisher for Tennessee was sophomore Mariah Smith who finished even par for the week to tie for 11th on the individual leaderboard.

The last time the Lady Vols advanced to the NCAA Championships the team finished fifth, advancing to the quarterfinals of match play. UT is one of just 21 schools to compete in 14 or more NCAA Championships.