After days of waiting and without a single shot being taken, the NCAA made the controversial decision to cancel its women’s golf regional in Baton Rouge, La., on Wednesday, sparking frustration and outrage among teams and golfers that didn’t get a chance to compete.
Golfweek reports that the decision was made because the course was not “playable at a championship level.”
Here’s the scene in Baton Rouge when officials canceled NCAA Regionals without one single shot being played over the course of three days. pic.twitter.com/JtchPN9zlt— Golfweek (@golfweek) May 12, 2021
“Look, this is one of the most gut-wrenching decisions and announcements that I’ve ever been a part of,” Brad Hurlbut, NCAA Committee representative and AD at Fairleigh Dickinson said as he made the announcement on Wednesday. “Even though the course is playable, it’s not playable at a championship level. Therefore, the top six teams that were seeded will advance, along with the top three individuals that were not on those six teams.”
The course had some standing water, and according to ESPN had been subject to seven inches of rain in recent days. That, however, did not stop the outcry. Golfweek reports that some players were so despondent that they broke down in tears.
“This place has no business hosting another regional,” Houston golf coach Gerrod Chadwell told Golfweek, adding that he felt no effort was made to make adjustments to ensure golfers could compete.
One tweet, posted by Miami junior golfer Kristyna Frydlova summed up the frustration. The tweet contained several photos of the course, which despite some standing water appeared to many to be playable.
This is what an unplayable course looks like according to @NCAA @USGA at the Baton Rouge regional. No water on the greens, looked even nicer yesterday when we couldn't play either. After 18 years of playing golf I've never experienced anything like this pic.twitter.com/Oub1pJdACP— Kristyna Frydlova (@frydlins) May 12, 2021
“The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Committee regrets that the 2021 NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championships regional in Baton Rouge could not be conducted as scheduled this week,” an NCAA statement on the situation read. “The University Club has taken on over 7 inches of rain in the past several days. The Division I Women’s Golf Committee, NCAA staff and the Games Committee in Baton Rouge have been in constant communication throughout the past several days about the course conditions that have led to this unprecedented and most difficult decision.”
Meanwhile, the highest seeded teams set to compete in the regional will advance to play in the NCAA Championship. Those teams are: LSU, Mississippi, Baylor, Oregon, Maryland and Alabama.