TULSA, Okla. – No. 6 Washington could not take advantage of improved conditions and finished with a round of 13-over 293 to drop to 15th place after the third round of the NCAA championships at the Tulsa Country Club.
After entering play in a tie for ninth, Washington struggled early on and is 25 shots off the lead at 41-over 881.
No. 3 Duke rose to the lead with a round of 2-under 278 and has a six-shot lead over USC, which also shot 278, at 16-over 856. Second-round leader Oklahoma struggled to an 11-over 291 to drop into third at 26 over. UCLA was fourth at 27 over, followed by Mississippi State at 30 over, and Arizona, Arizona State and North Carolina State at 31 over.
Duke’s Celine Boutier and Doris Chen of USC are tied for the lead at 3-under 207.
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SooBin Kim continues to be Washington’s top player, although two late bogeys dropped her back into a tie for 20th. Kim finished with a round of 4-over 74, but bogeys on her final two holes dropped her to 7-over 217 for the tournament.
Charlotte Thomas had the best round for the Huskies with an even-par 70 and is tied for 35th at 9 over.
After two solid rounds to open the tournament, Jennifer Yang struggled with her opening nine holes on the way to a 5-over 75. Yang made two uncharacteristic double-bogeys on the front, before getting it together for nine pars on the back. Still, the damage had been done as Yang dropped back to a tie for 52nd at 11-over for the tournament.
Ying Luo was the final Husky score used Thursday, firing a round of 4-over 74. Luo had five bogeys and a birdie and is tied for 84th at 16 over.
Kelli Bowers could not maintain momentum after an opening birdie and finished with a 7-over 77. She is tied for 116th at 23-over. The final round will be played Friday.
• Seattle University allowed New Mexico State to take the early advantage and fell to the Aggies, 7-3, in the Western Athletic Conference baseball tournament. With the loss, Seattle U’s season ends with a 26-27 record, the most victories for the Redhawks since the program returned to varsity status in 2010.
“Unfortunately, we ran into our crutches, including not receiving timely hitting when we needed it, as we left 12 runners on base today,” Seattle U coach Donny Harrel said. “Also we didn’t take care of the ball defensively, especially when two of their first three runs came because we did not execute defensively. We put ourselves in a hole and didn’t have enough depth to push all the way back.”
Chase Fields, the Redhawks’ leadoff hitter, was 4 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored. Landon Cray had two hits and drove in a run. Brian Olson drove in the other run for the Redhawks.
• Western Washington first baseman/utility player Alexie Levin has been named to the Daktronics Division II West Region softball second team.
From sports-information reports.