Lady Camel golfers named All-America scholars

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Campbell University’s Anna Svanka, Stacey White and Isabell Ekstrom are among the 1,096 student-athletes nationwide named 18Birdies All-American Scholars by the Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) for the 2018-19 season.

A native of Riga, Latvia and the 2019 Big South women’s golf scholar-athlete of the year, Svanka graduated in May with a 3.815 grade-point average in kinesiology. White, a rising senior from Brisbane, Australia, has a 3.835 GPA as a sport management major and Ekstrom a rising junior from Uppsala, Sweden, owns a 3.862 GPA in business administration.

To earn All-America Scholar honors, an individual must hold a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher and must participate in at least 50 percent of an institution’s rounds for the academic year.

Svanka and White are the second and third players in Campbell women’s golf history to earn WGCA All-American Scholar honors three times, joining 2018 graduate Annelie Sjoholm. Ekstrom earned the award for the second-straight season. Ten different Camels have claimed the award since 2011.

“These young ladies define the term student-athlete,” said Campbell head coach John Crooks. “They take enormous pride in being successful in the classroom and on the golf course. I am so proud the Women’s Golf Coaches Association recognized their outstanding achievements.”

Additionally, all seven members of the 2018-19 team – Desiree Andersson, Ekstrom, Emily Hawkins, Anna Nordfors, Alice Sundberg, Svanka and White – earned Big South Conference Presidential Honor Roll status by recording at least a 3.0 GPA during the academic year.

A two-time Big South all-conference performer, Svanka closed her collegiate campaign with a career-best 73.61 stroke average (10th-lowest in school history) while playing in all 11 events for the Camels in 2018-19. Her 73.098 scoring average stands seventh-lowest in school history. As a senior, she finished No.-204 in the final Golfstat Cup ranking and tied for 50th nationally in par-3 scoring (3.07). She posted five top-10 finishes, including an eighth-place showing at the Big South Championship and a third-place effort at the Golfweek Program Challenge (74-66-67—207), where she posted the two lowest rounds of her career over the last 36 holes. Svanka earned a place on the Big South Presidential Honor Roll in each of her four years.

White also played in all 11 events during the 2018-19 season and was named to the Big South all-conference and all-championship teams. She was runner-up at the Big South Championship (70-73-72—215) for the second-straight year, one of three top-10 finishes this season. White finished her junior campaign with a 73.06 stroke average, the fourth-lowest mark in school history, and ranked 82nd-best in the country. She stood 29th in the nation in par-5 scoring (4.79) and posted a collegiate low 65 in the final round of the Golfweek Program Challenge (73-70-65—208), where she finished fourth. White also was individual runner-up at the LSU Tiger Classic. Her career scoring average (73.89) is second only to Ekstrom (73.53) in CU women’s record books. White has also collected Big South Presidential Honor Roll status three times.

Ekstrom opened the season by winning the Golfweek Program Challenge (67-67-68—202), where she set school 36- and 54-hole records in the process. She finished the campaign ranked 65th in the nation in scoring average (72.93) and collected three top-10 finishes. The 2018 Big South champion, Ekstrom finished fifth in the 2019 league tournament to earn all-championship honors for the second-straight season. Her career scoring average (73.53) is the best in Campbell women’s golf history and her 2018-19 mark (72.93) is the second best in the program’s single-season record book.

Coach Crooks’ 28th Fighting Camel team concluded another historic season with its 16th conference title and 22nd NCAA post-season appearance. The NGCA Hall of Fame coach guided his team to three tournament wins – the Golfweek Program Challenge, LSU Tiger Classic and Big South Championship – an eighth-consecutive trip to NCAA regional competition and a No. 23 finish in the final Golfstat national ranking.

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