Senior Madeleine Sheils will represent the Nebraska women's golf team at the 2012 NCAA Central Regional May 10-12 at the Scarlet Course in Columbus, Ohio. Sheils earned an individual at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament after earning first-team All-Big Ten honors.
The native of Boise, Idaho, closed the regular season by tying for third (76-71-71-218) at the Big Ten Tournament in French Lick, Ind., April 27-29. Sheils earned a spot on the Big Ten All-Tournament Team after helping the Huskers to a sixth-place finish in their inaugural trip to the Big Ten Tournament.
Sheils closed the regular season with Nebraska's top stroke average (74.24), which ranks as the third-best season average in school history. She produced nine top-25 finishes in 11 tournaments, including seven top-10 showings.
Sheils is one of six individuals who will join the 24 teams competing in the NCAA Central Regional field at Ohio State. In addition to the host Buckeyes, fellow Big Ten teams Purdue and Michigan will compete on the Scarlet Course.
Sheils, who is scheduled to be the first player on the course for her practice round on Wednesday at 6:30 a.m. central time, will be paired with Alex Buelow (Stetson) and Rika Park (Miami) while playing with Oregon, North Carolina State and Virginia in first- and second-round action on Thursday and Friday. Sheils is scheduled to tee off on Hole No. 1 at 7:55 a.m. central time for a single round on Thursday. She is set to tee off from Hole No. 10 at 12:15 p.m. central time on Friday, before playing Saturday's final round with pairings based on scores from the first 36 holes.
2012 NCAA Central Regional
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Host: Ohio State
Course: Scarlet Course
Par-72; Yardage: 6,264
Tee Times (All Times Central)
Thursday, May 10 - 7:55 a.m. (Hole 1)
Friday, May 11 - 12:15 p.m. (Hole 10)
Saturday, May 12 - TBA
Nebraska Qualifier: Madeleine Sheils
NCAA Central Regional Field (24 Teams)
Arkansas, Auburn, Butler, East Carolina, Florida State, Georgia, Harvard, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon, Purdue, Siena, South Florida, Tennessee, Texas State, UNC Wilmington, USC, UTSA, Vanderbilt, Virginia
Madeleine Sheils (Nebraska), Brittany Henderson (Coastal Carolina), Alex Buelow (Stetson), Leticia Ras-Anderica (Miami), Rika Park (Miami), Gabriella Wahl (East Tennessee State)
Live Scoring: www.golfstat.com
Sheils Ties for Third to Lead Nebraska at Big Ten Tournament
Madeleine Sheils fired a final-round 71 to tie for third individually and lead Nebraska to a sixth-place team finish at the 2012 Big Ten Women's Golf Tournament at the Donald C. Ross Course at the French Lick Resort, April 27-29.
Sheils, a senior from Boise, Idaho, carded a one-under-par 71 on the 6,156-yard layout of the Ross Course for the second straight day to finish with a three-round total of 218. It was Nebraska's best individual finish at a conference tournament since fellow Idahoan Elli Brown took third at the 2007 Big 12 Championships.
Sheils was one of only two golfers in the 2012 Big Ten Tournament to produce two rounds better than par in the 54-hole event. The other was individual champion Laura Gonzalez from Purdue, who posted back-to-back rounds of 69 to finish two strokes ahead of Sheils at 216. Michigan's Yugene Lee took runner-up honors at 217, while Sheils finished in a four-way tie for third with Michigan State's Caroline Powers and Lindsey Solberg and Ohio State's Rachel Rohanna.
Michigan State claimed the Big Ten team title with a three-round score of 885, which included a final-round 295. Purdue, led by Gonzalez's 69, produced Sunday's best round with a 291 to climb into second place at 895.
Nebraska registered the third-best final round with a 297 to finish in sole possession of sixth place at 908, marking NU's best score in history at a conference tournament. Ohio State took third at 898, while Michigan finished fourth (900) and Illinois fifth (906) just two strokes ahead of the Huskers.
Nebraska senior Kayla Knopik finished 17th at 227. Sophomore Steffi Neisen added a tie for 25th. Fellow sophomore Katelyn Wright finished strong by producing Nebraska's third-best individual round of the tournament with a 73. Wright tied for 48th (237), while senior Katie Keiser tied for 57th (241), and sophomore Remylee Molyneux took 64th (246).
Sheils Producing Stellar Senior Season for Huskers
Madeleine Sheils is producing the best year of her career for the Huskers. The senior from Boise, Idaho, owns a career-best 74.24 stroke average and has notched seven top-15 tournament finishes in 2011-12. A rock in the Husker lineup since the end of her freshman season in 2008-09, Sheils has played 102 consecutive rounds in the Husker top five.
After opening her senior season with a 10th-place finish at NU's Chip-N Club Invititational, Sheils captured her first career title at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational, Oct. 3-5 in Sammamish, Wash. She fired a then-career-best 214 over three rounds, including a career-best, and then-school-record-tying five-under-par 67 in the final round.
After tying for 18th at the Lady Northern, she tied for fourth at the Hoosier Fall Invite to produce her fourth straight top-20 showing to open the season. Although she tied for 37th at the Alamo Invite to close the fall, she shot her second sub-70 round of the year with a 69 in the second round.
Sheils opened the spring by taking eighth with her third-best tournament score of the season (220) at the Lady Puerto Rico Classic. She tied for 21st with a 221 at the Westbrook Spring Invitational, before tying for sixth with a 225 at the BYU at Entrada Classic.
She added her sixth top-10 finish of the year by taking sixth with a career-best, four-under-par 212 (69-73-70) at the Mountain View Collegiate, March 23-24. She added her seventh top-10 effort by tying for third with a 218 (76-71-71) at the Big Ten Tournament, April 27-29.
Sheils, who is ranked No. 67 nationally in the GolfStat Cup Standings (May 1), is a two-time Big Ten Golfer of the Week (Oct. 6, Oct. 19). Sheils owns 18 career top-25 finishes, including 11 career top-10 performances. She is a three-time NGCA Scholastic All-American.
Sheils Captures First Career Crown in Washington
Madeleine Sheils tied NU's then-school record with a final-round 67 to capture her first collegiate title at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invite at the Sahalee Country Club Oct. 5. The senior from Boise, Idaho, claimed her first individual medalist honor as a collegian with a three-round total of 214, one shot better than Washington's Jennifer Yang and Oregon's Cassy Isagawa. Sheils' final-round 67 included six birdies (Holes 3, 7, 8, 11, 13, 15) and one bogey (Hole 6) to go along with 11 pars.
The 67 marked the lowest round Sheils has ever produced, and matched Nebraska's school record before teammate Steffi Neisen established the new record with a 66 at the Mountain View Collegiate in Tucson, Ariz., March 23, 2012.
Neisen Fires School-Record 66 at Mountain View
Steffi Neisen earned a place in Husker history by firing a school-record, six-under-par 66 on the 6,227-yard layout at the Mountain View Golf Course in Tucson, Ariz., on March 23. Neisen's second-round score surpassed NU's previous top round of 67, which was shot five times - most recently by teammate Madeleine Sheils at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational in Sammamish, Wash., on Oct. 5, 2011.
Neisen's school-record round was the highlight of her third top-10 finish of the season, as she tied for seventh at Mountain View with a 215 - the second-best three-round total of her career.
Neisen showed continued improvement as a sophomore after producing one of the best freshman seasons in school history in 2010-11. The New Prague, Minn., native finished with NU's second-best stroke average this season with a 76.67 over 33 rounds. Neisen, who has competed in 65 consecutive rounds in the Husker lineup to open her career, produced the No. 3 stroke average by a freshman in NU history with a 77.13 a year ago.
After notching just two top-25 finishes as a rookie, Neisen notched four top-15 showings as a sophomore, including a career-best tie for second at the Alamo Invite to close the fall. For her efforts, which included a career-best 214 and a final-round 69, Neisen was named the Big Ten Golfer of the Week on Nov. 3.
Neisen opened the season by tying for sixth (227) at the Chip-N Club Invite, then finished outside the top 25 in three straight events (Edean Ihlanfeldt, 34th, 235; Lady Northern, T50th, 239; Hoosier Fall Invite, T26th, 234) before her runner-up finish at the Alamo. She opened the spring by tying for 48th (235) at the Lady Puerto Rico Classic, before tying for 40th (225) at the Westbrook Spring Invite. She added a tie for 13th (230) at the BYU at Entrada Classic.
Neisen owns seven career top-25 finishes, including four career top-10 showings. Off the course, Neisen was an NGCA Scholastic All-American in 2011.
Knopik Caps Career with Strong Senior Year
With her 17th-place finish at the 2012 Big Ten Tournament, fifth-year senior Kayla Knopik capped the best year of her Husker career. The Papillion, Neb., native, who played 74 consecutive rounds in the NU lineup, finished with NU's third-best stroke average as a senior. Knopik's 76.88 stroke average is nearly a stroke better than her junior season average, as she improved each year as a Husker. In fact, she shaved six strokes off her average from her redshirt freshman season in 2008-09.
Knopik, who entered the season with just two career top-25 finishes, produced five top-25 showings as a senior, including a career-best tie for sixth (227) to open the season at the Chip-N Club Invitational. She added a tie for 23rd (229) at the Lady Northern, before tying for 13th with a career-best 219 at the Alamo Invitational. Her effort in San Antonio included a career-best 69 in the second round. She added a tie for 13th at the BYU at Entrada Classic, before finishing 17th at the Big Ten Tournament (227).
Knopik notched six career top-25 finishes, including one top-10 effort. She was a first-team academic All-Big 12 selection in 2011, and she completed her bachelor's degree in finance from Nebraska in May of 2012.
Wright Surges in Spring of Sophomore Season
Sophomore Katelyn Wright emerged as a contributor in the Husker lineup with a pair of top-25 finishes during the spring, including a 15th-place finish at the Westbrook Spring Invitational. She fired a career-best 218 at Westbrook in Peoria, Ariz., including a career-best, one-under-par 71 in the final round. The Incline Village, Nev., native added a tie for 21st (234) in the BYU at Entrada Classic.
Wright, who has played all 33 rounds in the Husker lineup, closed the season with a 79.06 stroke average, which ranked fifth on the team. Over her last 15 rounds, Wright recorded a 77.20 average, including a tie for 48th (84-80-73-237) at the 2012 Big Ten Tournament.
Wright regularly played as NU's No. 6 golfer as a freshman, before earning spring lineup spots at the BYU at Entrada Classic and the Mountain View Collegiate. She posted an 80.08 stroke average over 25 rounds as a freshman.
Freshman Martinek Knocked Out for Season with Hand Injury
Shelby Martinek had played in every round for the Huskers in 2011-12, including lineup spots in five tournaments, before missing the BYU at Entrada Classic, March 19-20, and the Mountain View Collegiate with a hand injury. Unfortunately for the Huskers, the injury required surgery and Martinek will miss the rest of NU's season.
Martinek owned NU's fourth-best stroke average (79.05) prior to her injury. She also produced a pair of top-25 finishes. She tied for 18th with a 230 at the Hoosier Fall Invitational. Her effort in Indiana included a second-round 71. She improved her career-best a second-round 70 at the Alamo Invite the next time out.
She added a tie for 21st at the Westbrook Spring Invitational in her home state of Arizona, Feb. 26-27. The Tempe, Ariz., native fired consistent rounds of 76, 72 and 73 to finish with a career-best 221 at Westbrook in Peoria, Ariz.
Martinek competed as an individual at the Chip-N Club Invite before earning lineup spots at the Edean Ihlanfeldt, the Hoosier and Alamo invites. She competed in the NU lineup in the first three spring tournaments before the injury.
Huskers Continue to Set the Pace in the Classroom
Nebraska leads the nation with 59 NGCA Scholastic All-Americans since 1989, including two in 2011. Senior Madeleine Sheils has captured three straight NGCA Scholastic All-America honors and will try to become just the fourth Husker in history to win four awards in 2012. Sheils, a senior philosophy major from Boise, Idaho, hopes to join Jackie Beste, Allison Stewart and JC Stevenson as four-time Husker NGCA Scholastic All-Americans. Sheils was joined on the 2011 NGCA Scholastic All-America squad by 2010-11 freshman Steffi Neisen. The sophomore from New Prague, Minn., will take aim at her second straight award in 2012.
Overall, Nebraska owns one of the richest academic traditions in all of collegiate sports with a nation-leading 294 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans across all teams and all sports. The Huskers also lead the nation with 16 NCAA Top Eight Award winners. In 2010-11, Nebraska produced 15 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans while 113 student-athletes across all sports earned their bachelor's degrees during the 2010-11 academic year.