Purdue Women's Golf wins NCAA Championship

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WILMINGTON, N.C. -- Purdue held off Southern California on Friday to win its first NCAA women's golf team championship by one stroke, while Caroline Hedwall of Oklahoma State shot a 68 to win the individual title by four shots.

The Boilermakers shot a 7-over 295 to finish at 1 over. They entered the final round with a 7-stroke lead over the Trojans, overcame a late rash of bogeys and wrapped up the title on the final hole.

Southern Cal, which led after each of the first two rounds, could have forced a playoff at the Country Club of Landfall course after Purdue's Maude-Aimee LeBlanc left a 20-foot putt short on the 18th and tapped in for bogey.

The Trojans' Jennifer Song rolled her 10-foot birdie putt to the right of the cup to clinch the title for the Boilermakers.

Hedwall, a sophomore from Sweden, finished at 12-under 276 to beat Arizona State freshman Jennifer Johnson, who entered the final round with a one-stroke lead but shot a 73. LeBlanc (71) and Auburn's Cydney Clayton (66) finished at 7 under.

Before this, the Boilermakers' previous best finish came in 1997, when they were second to Duke. Either the Blue Devils or a Pac-10 team had won every team championship but one from 1993-2009.

Alabama, which had never finished higher than ninth in five previous NCAA championship appearances, ended up in third place at 5 over, followed by defending national champion Arizona State (9 over) and Arizona (14 over).

The Sun Devils' Johnson spent most of the first three rounds leading the individual competition, but Hedwall -- a two-time Big 12 player of the year -- made her move late in her round.

Starting on the back nine, she went to 11 under with a birdie on the par-5 No. 4. Johnson pulled even with a birdie on No. 10, then fell a stroke back with a bogey on the par-5 12th.

Hedwall pulled away with a birdie on No. 8, then patiently hung around the 18th green for roughly 2 hours while Johnson finished her round.

LSU's Megan McChrystal shot an NCAA championship-record 64 in the final round, breaking the mark of 65 most recently matched in 1998 by Arizona State's Grace Park and Duke's Jenny Chuasiriporn.

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