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Courtesy: Tim Cowie
Blue Devils celebate Virginia Elena Carta's winning putt
Duke Advances to NCAA Match Play Semifinals
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 05/22/2019
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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – In a thrilling finish as darkness donned the Blessings Golf Club, the second-seeded Duke women’s golf team advanced to the semifinals of match play with a 3&2 victory over seventh-seeded Stanford Tuesday evening in Fayetteville, Ark.

Senior Virginia Elena Carta drained a six-foot birdie putt on her 24th hole to push the Blue Devils past the Cardinal and into the semifinals for the third time over the last five years. Duke will advance to face sixth-seeded Arizona, who upset third-seeded Southern California, 3-2. The match will kick off at 8 a.m. (ET) Wednesday morning.

Carta, a product of Udine, Italy, had led by as many as 3-up with three holes remaining but Ziyi Wang made an improbable comeback to send the match to extra holes. The 2016 NCAA Individual Champion, Carta would hit big putt after big putt in the extra frames and finally put the match away on the sixth extra hole. It matched the longest match over the last five years since the championship moved to match play.

In a very impressive victory to give Duke its first point of the day, freshman Gina Kim knocked off the third-ranked golfer in the Golfweek ledger and eighth-ranked amateur in the world, Albane Valenzuela, 1-UP. Kim, who hails from Chapel Hill, N.C., never trailed in the match, after winning the first hole with a par. Valenzuela won holes 14 and 15 to even the match and it all came down to the 384-yard, par four 18th hole.

Kim hit a perfect drive in the fairway and placed her approach to nine feet, before sinking the birdie putt to win and put Duke ahead, 1-0.

Junior Ana Belac led by as many as 2-UP through five holes, but would end up falling behind by two through 12. She would battle back and win hole No. 13 and No. 16 to even the match. It all came down to hole No. 18 where Belac drained a five-footer to put the Blue Devils ahead, 2-0, with a 1-UP win over Mika Liu. Belac, who is from Portoroz, Slovenia, also birdied No. 18 earlier in the morning to close her third round.

In a match where she was tied or led the first nine holes, Duke freshman Miranda Wang ended up falling behind on the back nine and dropped a 2&1 decision to cut the Blue Devil lead to 2-1.

Sophomore Jaravee Boonchant had her work cut out for her against the eighth-ranked amateur in the world, Andrea Lee. Boonchant, who is from Bangkok, Thailand, took the opening lead with a par on No. 1, but would trail by one through hole six. With a birdie on No. 10, Boonchant led 1-UP, but Lee came back with a birdie on No. 11 to even the ledger. Boonchant featured a 1-UP lead through 15 holes, but dropped hole No. 16. Both golfers parred the next two holes, before Lee drained a short birdie on the 19th hole to even the score, 2-2. Boonchant finished the round with four birdies.

Duke avenged a 3-2 loss to Stanford in the 2016 match play semifinals in Eugene, Ore.

Fans can follow the action Wednesday with the Golf Channel morning drive from 7-9 a.m., followed by live coverage of the semifinals from 9 a.m., to 1 p.m. A replay of the semifinals will also air from 1-2:30 p.m.

Dan Brooks, Duke head coach, Duke defeated Stanford 3-2
On Virginia Elena Carta
People love her at Duke, both on and off the course. She’s just been a great representative of the university. There were moments when she had quite the lead then she lost it, so that’s what stood out to me. But she never gave up and she kept fighting.

On the team…
Any time you beat Stanford it’s great. They are a very good team, they’re a tough team and have a great spirit. So I’m proud of our girls.

On the semifinal tomorrow…
You have to rejoice. If you don’t do that then what are we doing this for? But we’ll have to get back at it tomorrow so we need to get some good sleep and get ready for Arizona.

Virginia Elena Carta, Duke, clinched win in 24 holes
On the weather delay…
We saw a lot of changes on this course so it can be hard to get back in the rhythm of things. When you’re making good shots and then have to stop for such a long time it can be hard to get back to it. I don’t think I played as well in the afternoon as I did this morning so I’m happy to get the win.

On the course…
I think my long game is always pretty good. This course demands a complete game, long game to short game, so you have to be a great player to play well. But I think if you have a good long game it makes your putting a little easier.

Duke 3, Stanford 2
Virginia Elena Carta (DU) def. Ziyi Wang (ST) – 24 holes
Gina Kim (DU) def. Albane Valenzuela (ST) – 1UP
Ana Belac (DU) def. Mika Liu (ST) – 1UP
Andrea Lee (ST) def. Jaravee Boonchant (DU) – 19 holes
Aline Krauter (ST) def. Miranda Wang (DU) – 2&1

Duke vs. Arizona (Semifinals)
Virginia Elena Carta vs. Sandra Nordaas
Jaravee Boonchant vs. Haley Moore
Miranda Wang vs. Yu-Sang Hou
Ana Belac vs. Ya Chun Chang
Gina Kim vs. Bianca Pagdanganan

Duke Golfers in Match Play in College
Virginia Elena Carta (6-4-1)
2015 East Lake Cup (1-1)
2016 Liz Murphey (2-1)
2016 NCAA Championship (2-0)
2017 Northwestern (0-2)
2018 NCAA Championship (0-0-1)
2019 NCAA Championship (1-0-0)

Ana Belac (3-3-1)
2016 East Lake Cup (1-1)
2017 Northwestern (1-1)
2017 Northwestern Quad (0-0-1)
2018 NCAA Championship (0-1)
2019 NCAA Championship (1-0)

Jaravee Boonchant (1-1)
2018 NCAA Championship (0-1)
2019 NCAA Championship (1-0)

Miranda Wang (0-1)
2019 NCAA Championship (0-1)

Gina Kim (1-0)
2019 NCAA Championship (1-0)

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