Preview video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSuNwuvguOs
2015-2016 Heart Finish: 1st of 11
Letterwinners returning/lost: 5/3
Elise Warne So. Melbourne, Australia
(All-Heart, 82.4 avg., low of 73)
Miranda Keeler Jr. Plattsmouth, Neb.
(All-Heart, 83.1 avg., low of 76)
Courtney Cunningham Sr. Muskogee, Okla.
(All-Heart, 83.8 avg., low of 76)
Jodi Saito Sr. Mililani, Hawaii
(All-Heart, 83.1 avg., low of 78)
Helene Larsen So. Viborg, Denmark
(Letterwinner, 83.9 avg., low of 79)
Brooke Fletcher Jr. Atlantic, Iowa
(Letterwinner, 84.0 avg., low of 77)
Brittany Evans Fr. Fernley, Nevada
Alexis Guimaraes Fr. San Ramon, Calif.
Deanna Peiffer Fr. Washington, Iowa
With a dynasty being built, the task of reloading and remaining a major player on the national scene awaits the William Penn women’s golf team in 2016-2017.
Three consecutive league crowns, including winning the Heart of America Athletic Conference Championships in their debut season, the Statesmen are primed for even more success this year. They will, however, have to accomplish this success without their best player as two-time NAIA All-American Demi Coertze has graduated. Do not fret, though, as Head Coach Nik Rule and his staff did a tremendous job in retention and recruiting. In addition to a load of returners, a set of strong newcomers should help to produce continued winning ways.
Four all-Heart performers are back on the roster, headlined by Elise Warne (So., Melbourne, Australia, Exercise Science) who owned an 82.4 stroke average in her freshman campaign. Miranda Keeler (Jr., Plattsmouth, Neb., Communications) (83.1 avg.), Jodi Saito (Sr., Mililani, Hawaii, Education) (83.1 avg.), and Courtney Cunningham (Sr., Muskogee, Okla., Computer Science) (83.8 avg.) earned post-season recognition last season as well and the entire crew will make a formidable quartet at the top of the lineup.
Brooke Fletcher (Jr., Atlantic, Iowa, Business Management), who had an 84.0 stroke average, came on strong at the end of 2015-2016 and will pace another talented quartet who are all poised to fight for varsity slots. Helene Larsen (So., Viborg, Denmark, Business Management) (83.9 avg.) has been outstanding in the preseason and will actually be at the top of the lineup when the season starts. Megan Rhoads (So., Schertz, Texas, Psychology) (84.7 avg.) and Alyssa Kerry (So., Bend, Ore., Communications) (86.7 avg.) are also expected to improve in their sophomore campaigns.
Fellow returners Jordan Postma (Jr., Marion, Iowa, Biology), Sofie Lund (So., Herning, Denmark, Psychology), Tiffany Duhon (So., Lafayette, La, Elementary Education), and Aramina Flores (Jr., Corpus Christi, Texas, History/Government) will add depth to the program.
The team’s talent pool does not end with the returners as freshmen Brittany Evans (Fernley, Nev.), Deanna Peiffer (Washington, Iowa, Public Accounting), and Alexis Guimaraes (San Ramon, Calif., Psychology) are coming off incredible prep careers and will be in the mix immediately.
The Statesmen host two events as part of a seven-tournament fall schedule, including the Midwest Intercollegiate Open in August and the William Penn Classic in October. WPU will also leave the state four times to face some of the best teams in the nation. Odds-on favorites to defend their Heart title, the navy and gold will likely be tested again by perennial contenders Grand View and Baker.
Story provided by Wade Steinlage