Manuela Carbajo Re, the 2011 South American Amateur Champion, will make her collegiate debut on Sunday.
ATHENS, Ga. --- The Georgia women's golf team, led by first-year head coach Josh Brewer, will open its 2012-13 campaign on Sunday when the Bulldogs begin play at the College of Charleston's Cougar Classic. The 54-hole event will continue through Tuesday at Yeamans Hall Golf Club outside Charleston.
Last week, Brewer said his focus was solely on determining Georgia's lineup. Now that the Bulldogs' playing five is set, he's beginning to think about his first tournament as a head coach.
"It's starting to sink in," Brewer said. "The kids' energy is up. They're excited because they know they're going to get the chance to start the year and see where we stand."
Brewer spent the previous four years as an assistant coach for the women's and men's golf programs at Southern Cal.
Senior Emilie Burger, a second-team All-American last year, anchors the Georgia lineup this weekend, which also includes sophomores Collins Bradshaw and Rocio Sanchez Lobato and freshmen Manuela Carbajo Re and Kailey Walsh.
"You look at most great teams and they have that one or two great players at the top," Brewer said. "We have one definite in Emilie. Hopefully, we'll have one or two more emerge as the season goes on.
"Emilie won (qualifying) convincingly and the other four sort of separated themselves," Brewer continued. "There wasn't a lot of drama for that fifth spot. That doesn't mean that six and seven weren't competitive at times. They just need to be more consistent. We think we have our best five players today going. In two weeks, hopefully, someone will emerge to push someone else in the lineup."
The 24-team field features a dozen consensus top-25 teams in the preseason Golf World coaches and Golfweek rankings. Defending national champion Alabama tops both preseason polls. Additional top-25 teams with their Golf World/Golfweek rankings include: No. 7/6 Auburn, No. 5/4 Duke, No. 9/14 Florida, the No. 11/16 Bulldogs, No. 10/23 LSU, No. 6/10 North Carolina, No. 17/22 South Carolina, No. 3/4 Southern Cal, No. 13/9 Tennessee, No. 8/8 Vanderbilt and No. 12/11 Virginia.
Rounding out the competing schools are College of Charleston, Charleston Southern, Furman, Maryland, Miami, Ole Miss, N.C. State, Penn State, UCF, UNC Greensboro, Wake Forest and Wisconsin.
Live scoring will be available throughout the tournament here.