Just two seniors return on young team
Jessica Allen | Sports writer | @Jessdaleallen
Photos courtesy of UVU Athletics
As the Utah Valley University women’s golf team prepares for the upcoming season, they do so with a roster that includes three redshirt freshmen and three true freshmen.
There are many youth on the 2015-16 version of the UVU women’s golf team and Head Coach Sue Nyhus knows the challenge the Wolverines face.
“This year, we are going to put one foot in front of the other,” Nyhus said. “We will try to stay within ourselves and one step at a time learn the best we can on how to get everything right. We will just have to see where the chips fall.”
Nyhus will be leaning on senior Cassandra Lesa and junior Kimberly Nyhus, who is the daughter of Coach Nyhus.
“They are our two returning most successful players,” Coach Nyhus said. “They, along with Monica Yeates and Kalea Heu, are to have some pretty big shoes to fill because our leaders from last year were two of the best leaders I have ever experienced in my 20 years of coaching.”
Lesa played in all 11 tournaments in 2014-15 that included three top-10 finishes and was the team’s top finisher in five of the 11 tournaments. She ended the season by finishing 30th at the WAC Championships with a three-round total of 244 (82-85-77).
“I’m really excited about just playing,” Lesa said. “This year we have all the right tools and equipment to play well and I think with the players we are bringing in, we are going to make a big jump this year.”
Nyhus begins her junior season after being named a WGCA All-American Scholar for the second straight season and playing in all 11 tournaments for the Wolverines last season. She was the top finisher for UVU in four of the 11 tournaments and recorded her first-ever collegiate victory at the Weber State Wildcat Invitational to open last season. She finished 23rd at the WAC Championships and is really excited for the new season to get going.
“We have some pretty high hopes for this upcoming season,” Coach Nyhus said. “Our returners have been working hard and our incoming freshmen are great players. Our team is going to be better this year than it has been in our program’s history and it is only going to get better.”
Even though the Wolverines are young, their incoming freshmen have known great success in high school especially true freshman Katie Perkins. Perkins is out of St. George, where she was a three-time state champion in the 3A classification at Desert Hills High School.
“She is a great competitor, a hard worker and fun girl,” Coach Nyhus said. “We are looking forward to joining her support team and we are excited about becoming part of the Katie Perkins fan club.”
Most of the 12 competitions for the UVU women’s golf team will happen outside the state of Utah but it doesn’t matter to Coach Nyhus. She just wants to help them have fun and grow as individuals.
“We are going to have a great time in the adventure,” Coach Nyhus said. “It’s all about learning life lessons through the vehicle of competitive golf. That’s the mission. They look at our scores, and scores are important; finishes are important but growing independent women is far more important than any number.”