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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

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Sophomore continues tear through women’s golf world with eye on the future

Texas A&M golfer Marijosse Navarro has placed in the top six in all seven events in which she has competed.
Sarah Lane

Texas A&M golfer Marijosse Navarro has placed in the top six in all seven events in which she has competed.

Speaking with A&M’s Marijosse Navarro, a sophomore whose quiet voice matches her shy and humble personality, you wouldn’t know you were engaging one of the most relentless and dominant rising stars of the women’s golf world.
Ranked ninth nationally, Navarro sits near the pinnacle of her sport at the collegiate level. She has finished in the top six in nine straight events, including all seven she’s entered this year.
And though she has been on campus just more than a year, top-tier results are already the norm. A&M head coach Trelle McCombs said Navarro’s stature continues to grow by the tournament and could develop into a legacy that future members of the program aspire to match.
“I would say definitely leaving behind a legacy is well up there,” McCombs said. “She’ll be a two time All-American. I think we’ve only had two other two time All-Americans in Ashley Knoll and Katerina Ruzickova.”
The Mexico City native moved to the United States at age eight to further expand her golf career. She landed in San Antonio, where she attended Blessed Hope Academy prior to committing to Texas A&M.
Navarro enrolled for the spring semester of 2014 and only competed in half of that season. She made an instant impact with six top-20 finishes, one victory and a program record-tying sixth place finish at the NCAA championships. In half a season she landed on the SEC All-Freshman team and took home World Golf Coaches Association Second Team All-American honors.
As it turns out, her shortened freshman campaign only foreshadowed her effort this year. Navarro won back-to-back events this season, the UC Irvine Invitational and the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, becoming only the sixth Aggie to ever do so.
At the UC Irvine Invitational, Navarro needed a birdie on the 54th and final regulation hole to force a sudden death playoff with the University of Southern California’s Gabriella Then. After matching scores for four holes, Navarro finally outlasted Then with a par on the fifth playoff hole. Navarro won the tournament and earned special exemption into the Invitational’s affiliated LPGA Tour event, the Kia Classic, this past March.
“Well, since it was my second year playing the UC Irvine, I knew what the course looked like,” Navarro said. “And so, a few weeks or a month before the tournament, I practiced several of the shots that I remembered and it helped a lot.”
The prospect of exemption into an LPGA Tour event, an experience she described as surreal, raised the stakes for Navarro heading into the event.
“Every time you get the chance to play for an LPGA exemption, that gets you excited to win, excited to play,” Navarro said. “And that was my goal, get the exemption, and I just went for it. I was focused and I didn’t care what the others were doing so I just did my own thing.”
Heading into postseason play, Navarro leads the team and maintains a tie for first in the nation in scoring with an average of 70.95 supported by five sub-70 rounds on the year. She shows a tendency to play her best golf when pressure mounts, as she averages 69.43 in final rounds of play. McCombs said Navarro is motivated by a determination to win rather than focusing on finishing in the top five.
“She just wants to win and she wants to be the very best and I mean, if you talk about it from a technical standpoint, her short game is probably one of the best in the country,” McCombs said. “She’s just consistent, but I would say determination is probably her main key of why she beats so many people.”
Her determination was on full display two weekends ago at the Rebel Intercollegiate, when the Annika Award watch list nominee overcame illness and doubt that she would even complete the tournament to finish second.
Navarro fired a tournament record -6 (66) in her final round in Oxford to help plant the Aggies atop the team leaderboard for the second time this season. She was named SEC Golfer of the Week just a few days later.
Navarro said after A&M she will likely look for a full-time run on the LPGA Tour. With Tiger Woods as her golfing idol, Navarro said she will do whatever it takes to succeed, even if that means doubling her current practice regimen and intensifying physical workouts.
“In 10 years, well, I want to be number one in the world,” Navarro said. “That’s my goal.”
No. 9 Texas A&M begins SEC Championship play Friday in Hoover, Alabama.

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  • Texas A&M golfer Marijosse Navarro has placed in the top six in all seven events in which she has competed this year.

    Sarah Lane

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