By outreach@cw.ua.edu (Ehsan Kassim)

Lauren Stephenson broke team records and qualified for the NCAA Women’s Golf Championships at Clemson last year as a freshman, however she did not see Clemson as the best fit for herself, so she transferred.

Stephenson has been playing golf since she was eight years old and her goal is to play professionally in the LPGA, which played a part in her decision to transfer to the University of Alabama.

“Clemson wasn’t really the right fit for me,” Stephenson said. “I wanted to find a better school, a better fit for me. I just loved the coaches here and all my teammates here. They are amazing people and fun to be around.”

Her decision to transfer to Alabama has been a major boon for the University and particularly the women’s golf team during the 2016-2017 season.

Alabama will head to Athens, Ga. to compete in the Liz Murphey Classic.

Heading into this tournament, Alabama ranks as the No. 1 team in the country.

Stephenson believes that the competition of being the best on the team fuels her to be better.

“I think it is good to have a lot of competition within your team,” Stephenson said. “Because it pushes everyone to be better. This past weekend we all did a little match play format to prepare for Nationals. I think it’s very helpful to get better as a team, as we have a lot of competition. We’ll ask each other and talk with the coaches about how we can improve on certain things and definitely learn from each other.”

While she has succeeded on the golf course, Stephenson has learned the importance of striking a balance between athletics and completing her school work.

“It’s very difficult to make sure you are on time and managing all your work,” Stephenson said. “…Just making sure you get ahead in all your classes and don’t get behind, so when you’re on the course, you’re not stressing about classwork or missed assignments. Our professors have our schedules and they are accommodating for missed tests and assignments.”

As a successful college women athlete, Stephenson stresses the importance of girls taking up sports in high school and college, as she believes it will benefit them in the long run.

“I think that it is very important that girls get the opportunity to play sports in high school and college,” Stephenson said. “I think you learn from it and it will definitely help you moving forward in any career you choose. I think it’s definitely helped me grow as a person.”

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Source:: The Crimson White Sports