After Augusta National heartache, Latanna Stone and Ingrid Lindblad lead LSU to first SEC title in 30 years

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Latanna Stone still can’t get over the response. Just recently the LSU junior received two letters in the mail from admirers who appreciated how she handled a tough loss at the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. Even that night after the round, a surprise direct message from Maria Fassi on social media had her in shock.

Fassi, of course, is one of the few people in the world who could relate, having finished runner-up at the inaugural event to Jennifer Kupcho.

“It was really almost calming to hear,” said Stone. Fassi said she wanted to crawl through the TV to give Stone a hug.

As Stone says, it was “just two holes.” But those two holes – a double-bogey on the 17th and a bogey on the 18th at Augusta National – lost Stone what many consider to be the most coveted prize in amateur golf.

MORE: 16-year-old Anna Davis wins Augusta National Women’s Amateur

Even so, Stone said she was more nervous competing in the SEC Championship last weekend than she was the back nine at Augusta National.

“I don’t know, it just felt way more important,” said Stone. “I could let everyone down if I don’t win this match.”

The power of a team.

Stone birdied her last three holes to seal LSU’s first SEC title in 30 years at Greystone Country Club’s Legacy Club, where the Tigers beat Florida, 4-1.

LSU after winning the 2022 SEC Championship. (Photo by: Andrew Wevers)

Ingrid Lindblad, a junior from Sweden who finished second at the ANWA for a second straight year earlier this month, trounced Annabell Fuller, 6 and 5, in the championship match.

Lindblad keeps looking back at pictures and videos from SECs with a “wow, we did that” reaction. She feels the same way when she looks back at the birdie she made on the 14th at Augusta on Saturday followed by eagle on the 15th.

This year’s runner-up finish at the ANWA wasn’t as tough to swallow, she said, given that she closed with a 4-under 68 to climb up the leaderboard.

LSU’s Ingrid Lindblad during the 2022 SEC Championship. (Photo: Andrew Wevers)

Anna Davis was the surprise winner at Augusta, a 16-year-old high school sophomore who recently earned a sponsor invite into next week’s new LPGA event at Palos Verdes. While Davis prepares for her LPGA debut, Lindblad and Stone are busy preparing for NCAA regional action.

“I think we’ve just got to take one step at a time,” said Lindblad, “not get too far ahead of ourselves.”

Stone hopes the team has a crawfish boil sometime soon to celebrate SECs.

Is she over the heartbreak at Augusta?

“I’m still like shoot,” said Stone. “But at the same time, you kind of have to move on, and what’s done is done.”

There are more titles to be won.

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College golf: 2022 NCAA women's conference championship dates and results

Phoebe Brinker
Phoebe Brinker