The Nebraska women's golf team continues its western Spring Break swing by traveling to Tucson, Ariz., to compete in the Mountain View Collegiate, March 23-24.
The Huskers head to Tucson direct from St. George, Utah, after taking third in the 12-team BYU at Entrada Classic, Monday and Tuesday.
Senior Madeleine Sheils led a solid Husker lineup that placed all five golfers among the top 30 in a 68-player field. The Boise, Idaho, native notched her fifth top-10 finish of the year by tying for sixth with a 225.
Senior Kayla Knopik and sophomore Steffi Neisen each added their third top-15 showings of the season by tying for 13th at 227. Sophomore Katelyn Wright added her second straight top 25 finish by tying for 21st at 234.
Senior Katie Keiser provided the Huskers with a major lift by producing her best tournament of the year with a 237 to tie for 30th. Keiser was a late replacement for injured Husker freshman Shelby Martinek in NU's top five in Utah.
Nebraska will be competing at Mountain View for the eighth time in the past nine seasons. The Huskers will face a 15-team field with strong representatives from the Big Ten and Big 12, including Indiana, Northwestern and Ohio State, along with Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Texas Tech and the hosts from Missouri. Louisville, Colorado State, Gonzaga, San Jose State, UNLV and Wyoming round out the tournament field.
Results will be available on Huskers.com at the end of each day's competition, but no live scoring will be available on GolfStat.com.
Mountain View Collegiate
Location: Tucson, Ariz.
Course: Mountain View (Par 72, 6,227 Yards)
Shotgun Starts (All Times Central)
Friday, March 23 (36): 9:30 a.m.
Saturday, March 24 (18): 9:30 a.m.
1. Madeleine Sheils
2. Steffi Neisen
3. Katelyn Wright
4. Kayla Knopik
5. Shelby Martinek
Katie Keiser, Remylee Molyneux
Mountain View Collegiate (15 Teams)
Colorado State, Gonzaga, Indiana, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Louisville, Missouri, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, San Jose State, Texas Tech, UNLV, Wyoming
Sheils Leads Strong Husker Showing at BYU Entrada
Madeleine Sheils finished in a tie for sixth to lead a strong day for the Husker lineup, as Nebraska took third in the BYU at Entrada Classic Tuesday.
Sheils, a senior from Boise, Idaho, produced her best round of the tournament with a one-over-par 73 on the Entrada at Snow Canyon Course to finish with a three-round score of 225 (76-76-73). It marked Sheils' fifth top-10 tournament finish of the season.
Fellow senior Kayla Knopik added a 77 to finish in a tie for 13th to match her second-best finish of the season. Knopik, a Papillion, Neb., native, closed with a three-round score of 230 (78-75-77) for her third top-15 finish of the year.
Knopik was joined in a tie for 13th by teammate Steffi Neisen. The sophomore from New Prague, Minn., settled for a final-round 79 to finish at 230 (73-78-79).
Fellow sophomore Katelyn Wright added her second-straight top-25 tournament finish with a 76 in the third round to close at 234 (80-78-76) in a tie for 21st. Wright, a native of Incline Village, Nev., produced a season-best 15th-place finish at the Westbrook Spring Invitational in NU's last competition.
The biggest boost to the Husker lineup on Tuesday came from senior Katie Keiser, who fired a season-best 75 for NU's second-best score of the day. Keiser, a Gothenburg, Neb., native, finished in a season-best tie for 30th at 237 (79-83-75) and helped the Huskers produce their best round of the tournament with a 301.
Nebraska finished with a three-round score of 914 (306-307-301), trailing only the champions from Texas State, which produced an impressive 892 over 54 holes. Texas State finished with a final-round 292, which was good enough to hold off a charge from a top-10 Oklahoma State squad. The Cowgirls scorched the course with a tournament-best 288 on Tuesday to finish at 900, which was still eight strokes back of Texas State.
OSU's Kelsey Vines captured medalist honors with a three-round score of 216 that included a two-under-par 70 on Tuesday. Texas State's Krista Puisite tied with Hailey Koschmann from Illinois for second at 219. Both golfers added one-under-par 71's in the final round.
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 74.46 stroke average and has notched five 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 93 consecutive rounds in the Huskers' 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. Sheils fired a career-best 214 over three rounds, including a career-best, and 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 second-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.
Sheils, who is ranked No. 81 nationally in the GolfStat Head-to-Head Standings (March 14), is a two-time Big Ten Golfer of the Week (Oct. 6, Oct. 19). Sheils owns 15 career top-25 finishes, including nine career top-10 performances. She is a three-time NGCA Scholastic All-American.
Sheils Captures First Career Crown in Washington
Madeleine Sheils tied the 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.
Sheils, a 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 the Nebraska record shared by Stephanie Ruiz (Marilynn Smith/Sunflower Invite, 2005), Kate White (Bronco Invite, 2007) and Natalie Gleadall (UNLV Spring Invite, 2009).
Neisen Showing Continued Improvement in Second Season
Steffi Neisen has shown continued improvement as a sophomore after producing one of the best freshman seasons in school history in 2010-11.
The New Prague, Minn., native owns Nebraska's second-best stroke average this season with a 76.63 over 24 rounds. Neisen, who has competed in 56 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 owns a trio of top-15 showings as a sophomore, including a career-best tie for second at the Alamo Invitational to close the fall campaign. For her efforts in San Antonio, which included a career-best tournament score of 214 and a career-best 69 in the final round, 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 Invitational, 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 Invitational. She opened the spring by tying for 48th (235) at the Lady Puerto Rico Classic, before tying for 40th (225) at the Westbrook Spring Invitational.
Most recently, Neisen tied for 13th (230) at the BYU at Entrada Classic. Neisen owns five career top-25 finishes, including three career top-10 showings. Off the course, Neisen was an NGCA Scholastic All-American in 2011.
Knopik Capping Career with Strong Senior Year
Fifth-year senior Kayla Knopik is producing the best year of her career in 2011-12. The Papillion, Neb., native, who has played 65 consecutive rounds in the Husker lineup, owns NU's third-best stroke average. Knopik's 76.83 stroke average is nearly a stroke better than her junior season average, as she has shown impressive improvement each year on the course as a Husker. In fact, she has 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, has produced four 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 her most recent top-25 finish with a tie for 13th (23) at the BYU at Entrada Classic.
Knopik owns six career top-25 finishes, including one top-10 effort. She was a first-team academic All-Big 12 selection in 2011.
Wright Surging in Spring During Sophomore Season
Katelyn Wright is emerging as a contributor in the Husker lineup. The sophomore from Incline Village, Nev., has produced top-25 finishes in each of the Huskers' last two events, 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. Wright added a tie for 21st (234) in the BYU at Entrada Classic.
Wright, who has played all 24 rounds in the Husker lineup as a sophomore, has lowered her season stroke average to 79.29, which ranks fifth on the team. Over the last six rounds, Wright has recorded a 75.33 average.
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 Making Mark on Husker Lineup
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, with an injury.
Martinek owns NU's fourth-best stroke average on the year (79.05) and has produced a pair of top-25 tournament finishes as a freshman. 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 round with a second-round 70 at the Alamo Invitational 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.
One of the top high school golfers in the state of Arizona over the past four years and an experienced junior golfer at the national level, Martinek brought a decorated resume to Nebraska. The 2008 Arizona Class 5A-II state champion, Martinek was ranked as one of the top 175 players in the GolfWeek/Sagarin girls rankings as a senior at Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe. Martinek is getting a chance to help the Huskers early in her career, competing as an individual at the Chip-N Club Invite before earning lineup spots at the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational, the Hoosier Fall Invitational, where she tied for 18th, and the Alamo Invite.
She had competed in the Husker lineup in the first three spring tournaments before sitting out the tournament in Utah.
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.