Seniors Have Come a Long Way Ready for WAC Championships
Courtesy: New Mexico State University  
Release:  04/13/2011

By Kyle Purcell

For NM State Media Relations

LAS CRUCES (April 13) - With the 2011 Women's Golf Western Athletic Conference Championship starting on April 15, it marks a possible end of the road for NM State's three senior golfers.

Lauren (Buz) Bowerman-Ritchie, Suteera (Pang) Chanachai, and Apinporn (Mint) Swaschuto, who have had great success on and off of the course, are Head Coach Paul Brillant's first senior class since returning to NM State in 2006.  Brilliant couldn't be more proud.

"We have been building towards this year," Briliant said.  "Before this year we didn't have anything to build on, before we had no foundation."

All three players were put completely out of their comfort zone since they come from different countries.  Bowerman-Ritchie hails from Canada whereas Chanachai and Swaschuto both come from Thailand.

The team's biggest achievement came when they won the NM State Price's "Give 'em Five" Invitational in the fall of 2010.  The team shot 866 (+2) with all three of the seniors tying for sixth place with 218 (+2).  The team broke a school record by shooting the lowest score that any other women's golf team at NM State had at that tournament.

Despite the fact that they are a team, they are still individuals with different personalities.

According to Brilliant, Bowerman-Ritchie is an artist that makes jewelry, pottery, and paintings.  When she first arrived at NM State she was not sure what she wanted to study.  Brilliant says that she has just recently found herself.      

"Buz (Bowerman-Ritchie) is a lot of fun," Co-head coach Jackie Booth said.  "has been and always will be."

Swaschuto had offers from a few different schools on the east coast.  However she chose to come to NM State because it was sunny and she can play all year long.  Booth describes her as "Miss Consistency," although she hasn't always been that way.  Over the last four years her course management has really improved according to Booth.

Chanachai, who the coaches claim to be the best of the three, was the WAC freshman of the year for the 2007 season.  One of the biggest things she had to overcome was her lack of patience and trying to stay positive while playing.   According to Brilliant, Chanachai has the talent to play at the next level.

All three seniors have been here for four years and they have given their coaches and fellow players four year's worth of wonderful memories.

 "Watching them come in as high school kids and then they leave here as young woman, that's the fun part," Booth said

The NM State Women's Golf team will be playing in the WAC Championship from April 15-17 at the Long Bow Golf Club in Mesa, Arizona.

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