Athens, Ga. --- The Georgia women's golf team has been ranked No. 6 in the nation in the Golf World/NGCA Coaches Poll. The Bulldogs open the 2008-09 season at the NCAA Fall Preview this Sunday.
"I was a little surprised to see us ranked so high mostly because of our lack of depth," head coach Kelley Hester said. "I'll put our top four against anyone in the country, but we only have six players on our roster. There will be a premium on staying healthy and that will be key. I certainly feel good about the returnees we have and our new kids come in with some impressive resumes as well, but the bottom line is you have to compete and play well when you tee it up."
Georgia returns three golfers who competed in every event last season -- senior Mallory Hetzel, junior Carolina Andrade and sophomore Krystle Caithness, who earned honorable mention All-America honors in her initial collegiate campaign. Rounding out the Bulldogs' roster are newcomers Leigh Crosby, an Athens native who transferred to Georgia following two seasons at UCF, and freshmen Tess Fordham and Marta Silva, who tied for fifth at the Tenerife Open, Ladies European Tour professional event, in June.
"We've played exclusively at the UGA Golf Course so far this fall," Hester said. "Traditionally, the scores are on the higher side there because of the difficulty of the course and set up. Generally, our scores have been good, and I feel very confident heading into the season."
Georgia tied for 10th at last year's NCAA Championships, the Bulldogs' ninth top-10 finish in the last 11 national championships and 19th top-10 effort since 1979.