Roussin-Bouchard Named SEC Player of the Year, Gamecocks Rack Up Awards
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - South Carolina women’s golf sophomore Pauline Roussin-Bouchard has been named the 2021 SEC Player of the Year, while head coach Kalen Anderson has won the Coach of the Year award and four Gamecocks earned All-SEC honors, conference officials announced Friday.
Roussin-Bouchard is winding down arguably the best season in team history with a program record four tournament wins, including the SEC Championship, where she shattered the SEC Championship scoring record with her 17-under (199) final, also the lowest 54-hole score in South Carolina program history. Roussin-Bouchard has shredded the record book this season with all four of her tournament winning scores taking over as the four lowest scores in team history. Her 9-under (63) in the opening round of the Moon Golf Invitational broke the record for lowest 18-hole score in program history, and three of her rounds have come in at 7-under (65), tied for the fourth lowest round in team history. The sophomore enters next week’s NCAA Regional with a 69.91 scoring average, the lowest single season total in team history, and as the top-ranked individual in college golf. She is the third Gamecock to win SEC Player of the Year honors, joining Sew Ai Lim (1995) and Kristy McPherson (2003).
For the second time in her career head coach Kalen Anderson has been named SEC Coach of the Year. Under Anderson’s leadership the Gamecocks have won a program record four tournaments, the highest total in the SEC and tied for best in the nation. The team holds a 285.45 scoring average, the lowest in program history. Anderson becomes the first two-time SEC Coach of the Year in program history, previously winning it in 2015.
Senior Ana Pelaez continues to rack up the honors in her final season, this time earning a spot on the All-SEC First Team, her third All-SEC honor and first time making the first team after earning second team in both 2017 and 2020. Pelaez has been on fire since rejoining the team this spring, earning top-10 finishes in all five of her tournaments, including back-to-back runner-up finishes and tying for third in her season debut. The senior holds a 70.13 scoring average this season and enters next week’s NCAA Regional as the No. 3 ranked player per the NCAA Golfstat rankings. Pelaez is one of six Gamecocks to earn All-SEC honors in three or more seasons.
Joining Pelaez among those six Gamecocks is senior Lois Kaye Go, earning her third All-SEC honor with a spot on the second team for 2021. Go has been steady for the Garnet and Black all season, earning three top-10, and two top-5 finishes this season, including her runner-up finish at the Gamecock Intercollegiate, her highest finish as a Gamecock. Go’s South Carolina career will go down as one of the strongest in program history with her earning All-SEC Second Team honors in 2018 and first team honors in 2019, along with All-America Honorable Mention distinction from 2018-20. Go currently holds the second lowest scoring average in program history, 72.72. Go also earned a spot on the SEC Community Service Team.
Last, but never least, is freshman Paula Kirner earning a spot on the SEC All-Freshman Team. Kirner slotted into the starting lineup in the fall and has started six of the seven tournament’s she’s played in, growing stronger as the season progressed. Kirner earned her best finish of the season at the Valspar Augusta Invitation, tying for 17th place, giving her three top-20 finishes on the year. Kirner is the fourth Gamecock to earn All-Freshman honors in the last five seasons.
South Carolina near shifts its focus to the NCAA Regional in Louisville. Play in the bluegrass state is set to begin on Monday.
2021 SEC Awards
PLAYER OF THE YEAR Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, South Carolina
COACH OF THE YEAR
Kalen Anderson, South Carolina
FIRST TEAM ALL-SEC
Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, South Carolina
Julia Johnson, Ole Miss
Ingrid Lindblad, LSU
Ana Pelaez, South Carolina
Brooke Matthews, Auburn
Celina Sattelkau, Vanderbilt
Benedetta Moresco, Alabama
Latanna Stone, LSU
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