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Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Carla Bernat claims individual title at Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic

Bernat earns individual title before second Augusta National Women’s Amateur appearance, advanced to Saturday’s final round
Junior+golfer+Carla+Bernat+practices+at+Colbert+Hills+on+Sept.+5%2C+2023.+Bernat+claimed+the+individual+title+at+the+Liz+Murphey+Collegiate+Classic+and+earned+her+second+invitation+to+the+Augusta+National+Womens+Amateur.
Avery Johnson
Junior golfer Carla Bernat practices at Colbert Hills on Sept. 5, 2023. Bernat claimed the individual title at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic and earned her second invitation to the Augusta National Women’s Amateur.

Update (9 p.m. Thursday, April 4): Through two days, Bernat was outside the top 75, looking unlikely to make the Saturday cut. She proceeded to shoot 3-under par 69 on Thursday, skyrocketing to tied-23rd at +3 overall. Bernat’s tee off begins at 7 a.m. CDT on Saturday.

Junior golfer Carla Bernat finished in a league of her own at the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic Saturday, claiming the individual title with a 54-hole score of 9-under par, six strokes ahead of the three finishers in second place. 

Bernat’s tally of 207 strokes tied for the third-best 54-hole score in program history and marked the best since 2017. 

“Carla did an amazing job from start to finish,” head coach Stew Burke said in a statement from K-State Athletics. “She stayed patient and hung in there. She really helped the team to one of our best finishes against a tough field, and she defeated some extremely accomplished players.”

The junior will look to continue her excellence on the course this week as she heads to the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. The event will be held at the renowned Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters Tournament.

“The golf course acted as an excellent tune-up for Augusta National next week,” Burke said. “She continues to excel, and I’m excited to see her compete on the international stage before returning home to Manhattan.”

The title at the Liz Murphey Collegiate, which Georgia hosted, was the second for Bernat on the season. She previously hoisted the individual trophy at K-State home’s invitational, the Marilynn Smith Sunflower Invitational at Colbert Hills. 

In Stew Burke’s first year at the helm, K-State has collected three individual titles, with two from Bernat and one from senior Haley Vargas at the White Sands Invitational in October 2023. It is the first time since 2017-18 that the Wildcats took home three individual titles. 

Bernat followed Burke from Tulane in the transfer portal. Now, she is already tied for third place in program history for career wins and tied for eighth place in career top-five finishes with four.

The Wildcats as a team placed fifth on the leaderboard among the 17-team field, placing ahead of six teams ranked in the top 60 nationally. K-State, who’s ranked 56th, trailed No. 22 Virginia by one stroke. 

“Today was a big step forward,” Burke said. “The golf course was playing as tough as it has all week, and I’m really proud of the way the team hung in there right until the end. You have to be your best to compete in fields like this, and even though we didn’t have our best stuff this week, we still managed to rely on grit and determination to get us over the line today.

Bernat will compete in the Augusta National Women’s Amateur April 3-6 while the team will be back in action April 8-9 for the Sooner Match Play tournament at Oklahoma.

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About the Contributor
Avery Johnson, multimedia editor
Multimedia editor for 2023-24. Previously photographer for spring 2023.
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