RICHARDSON, TX --- The American Southwest Conference formally announced on Wednesday (July 31) the addition of the University of California, Santa Cruz as an affiliate member in the sport of women's golf effective with the 2013-14 academic year as approved by unanimous vote of the ASC Council of Presidents.
"The American Southwest Conference is pleased with the addition of UC Santa Cruz as an affiliate member in women's golf as the Banana Slugs strengthen what is one of the most successful ASC sports programs," said ASC commissioner Amy Carlton. "The addition will continue to provide the student-athletes an opportunity to play with some of the top competition in NCAA Division III and the West Region."
UC Santa Cruz women's golf program has had success in the West Region and Division III, five times completing a season ranked among the Top 30 Division III teams, including a No. 28 ranking in the 2012-13 Golfstat Division III Head-to-Head rankings. Since beginning women's golf in the 2002-03 academic year, UC Santa Cruz has regularly competed against ASC teams in both regular-season and postseason tournaments as a Division III independent.
"UC Santa Cruz has been participating in ASC events since the birth of our program," said UCSC women's golf head coach Paulette Pera. "It gives us great pride and happiness to be an official member of the family. Our inclusion to this conference is a win-win situation for all parties involved."
A member of the University of California system, UC Santa Cruz combines the intimacy of a small, liberal arts college with the depth and rigor of a major research university. Since its inception in 1965, UC Santa Cruz has garnered national and international recognition of for its research and teaching. The Banana Slugs' official colors are navy blue and gold and their home course is Pasatiempo Golf Club in Santa Cruz, Calif.
UC Santa Cruz joins an ASC women's golf roster that includes defending national champion University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, defending national runner-up The University of Texas at Tyler, Concordia University Texas, Hardin-Simmons University, LeTourneau University, and The University of Texas at Dallas. The Banana Slugs will not be the only team making its first appearance under the American Southwest Conference women's golf banner in 2013-14. Louisiana College, which has sponsored men's golf since joining the ASC in 2000, will begin varsity-level play in women's golf in 2013-14.
The 2014 ASC Golf Championships will be held April 14-15 at a location to be determined later this summer.