Aug. 11, 2008
BERKELEY, Calif. - Sophomore Joanne Lee, a 2008 All-Pac-10 honorable mention selection while at USC, will transfer to Cal in time for the 2008-09 school year, Golden Bears' head women's golf coach Nancy McDaniel announced Monday.
Lee will not be able to compete in any tournaments during her first year in Berkeley but will be practicing with the team. She earned a waiver to have three years of eligibility remaining when she begins playing for Cal in the fall of 2009.
"We are thrilled to have Joanne playing for Cal beginning in 2009," McDaniel said. "Joanne is one of the most experienced Northern California players, having played in her third straight U.S. Open this summer and being an All-Pac-10 selection as a freshman at USC. Being from San Carlos, Cal is the right place for Joanne as she continues a promising collegiate career."
Lee posted a 74.5 stroke average over 17 rounds as a freshman at USC. Her best finish was a tie for third place at the Kent Youel Invitational with a score of 218, and her lowest round was a 70 at the Wildcat Invitational. She also tied for 11th (218) at the PING/ASU Invitational while playing as an individual in the spring.
"Cal was always one of my top choices when I was recruited," Lee said. "It's great to be back in Northern California. I love Coach McDaniel's enthusiasm. I have met four of my teammates so far. I'm excited because they're all nice and get along. They're a fun group to be around."
During the summer of 2008, Lee competed in her third straight U.S. Open and her sixth consecutive U.S. Women's Amateur Championships.
At Carlmont High in Belmont, Calif., Lee competed in the U.S. Girls' Junior Championships four straight years (2003-06). Lee was the leader in the clubhouse after the first stroke-play round at the 2006 U.S. Girls', firing a three-under 69 in a field of 156 players and was a semifinalist the previous year. She won the 2006 AJGA Fidelity Investments Junior Open at Ruby Hill Country Club in Pleasanton, Calif., and was a consistent top finisher in her 10 2006 AJGA events, earning Rolex Junior All-American honorable mention recognition.
Lee broke the course record at Malvern Country Club in Pennsylvania, firing a 67 during the second round of the AJGA McDonald's Betsy Rawls Girls' Championship. She was the 2005 NCGA Junior Girls' and the 2004 California State High School Girls' Champion, and she claimed the Girls' High School Central Coast Sectionals three years in a row (2003-05). Lee was the recipient of the "High School Sports Focus" "Driven to Make a Difference" award. She also was the 2005 and 2006 Carlmont High Female Athlete of the Year, 2005 JGANC Player of the Year and was a three-time San Jose Mercury News Golfer of the Year.
Lee and freshman Dianne Kwon, from Fremont, Calif., are the newcomers on the 2008-09 Cal women's golf team. Cal will be in search of its 10th straight NCAA regional bid and seventh NCAA Championships appearance this season.