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Arkansas Golf Star Leads Team to Top-5 National Finish for Fall

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Maria Fassi

Junior Maria Fassi looks to help the UA golf team win a national championship this spring after winning two of the four tournaments this season herself.

 

A junior tennis player has lead her team to a top-5 national finish for the fall semester – winning two of the four tournaments herself. She has been a consistent player for the Razorbacks and is wanting her team to win a national championship in the spring.  

“Overall, I think that we had a great season, definitely a historic one,” Fassi said. “It’s the first time in our program history that we won three of three tournaments in the season. So I’d say it was a great one as a team and individually, I think it’s been a really nice journey.”

Fassi won both the Mason Rudolph Invitational Championship from Sept. 15-Sept.17 in Franklin, Tennessee, and the ANNIKA Invitational from Oct. 1-Oct. 3 in Eden Prairie, Minnesota.

In Franklin, the Pachuca, Mexico native took first by shooting a total of 7-under-par-72, during the three-day tournament. The team also took first place by setting a tournament record of a total of 41-under-par.

In Eden Prairie, throughout her three rounds of play, she shot a total of 10-under-par-72. The Hogs also took home first place with shooting a total of 16-under-par. 12 strokes ahead of second place, UCLA.

She focuses on the small wins throughout the process to keep her grounded and focused, Fassi said.

“I was a lot more (emotionally) stable,” Fassi said. “I was focused on my daily progress and not on the tournaments. I think that doing that took a lot of pressure off the tournaments because I was focused on me and not on winning.”

Teammates of Fassi believe another factor to her success is her ability to be a wonderful teammate, they said.

Junior Cara Gorlei said Fassi is the epitome of an exceptional person.

“She always takes care of other people and makes sure everyone is okay,” Gorlei said. “I think that’s what adds to her success as well. Whenever she is practicing, if you need help she will take the time and sort you out first, before herself.”

Fassi is also very driven and dedicated to her craft, Gorlei said.

Senior Jordy LaBarbera also believes Fassi is worthy of her success this semester.

“She is the best teammate,” LaBarbera said. “She had a successful summer, got new clubs and everything has changed. She is simply amazing. No one deserves it more.”

Fassi said she believes her team is in a position to win a national championship the spring of 2018.

“I truly believe that we can continue to be the No.1 team in the nation next semester,” Fassi said.

As for herself, Fassi wants to put her best effort forward to help the team be as successful as possible, she said.

“I don’t like to say what my expectations are because I don’t have any,” Fassi said. “I believe that if we keep working as hard as we are, we can have a successful spring semester, and hopefully, we can bring home some more trophies.”

Fassi has had an impressive semester and looks to keep pushing her teammates everyday.

The biggest difference between this semester and last are the strong relationships within the team, Fassi said.

“I think that the team is in a better place,” Fassi said. “This year, we’re really close and we’re all pushing each other to be better everyday. And that is being reflected on the course, if we stay together and fight through difficulties we can achieve great things.”

 

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