On Monday, during the final round of the two-day, 54-hole Marilynn Smith Sunflower Invitational at Colbert Hills in Manhattan, junior Niamh McSherry’s confidence helped win her first collegiate tournament. She also contributed to Kansas State’s title win ahead of 10 other teams.
“I finally can say that I’m a college winner and that’s always going to carry with me. I’m going into the next few weeks, next semester and then senior year with a lot of confidence,” McSherry said to K-State Sports.
Ahead by two strokes going into the 18th hole, a difficult par-4 with water on the right side, McSherry drove the ball over the left side of the cart path, landing her ball in native grass.
McSherry found her first ball and punched it 70 yards out into the rough. Her third shot landed eight feet from the hole. Then, she dropped a par putt, putting herself 2-under par 70. This led to her third straight under-par round with a career-best 5-under par 211.
Confidence is hard to maintain in golf, but McSherry took it one hole at a time.
The past two years, McSherry hinted her talent, but never completely showed it. As a freshman, she had a pair of top 20 finishes and a top 10 performance last season.
K-State last hosted the Marilynn Smith Sunflower Invitational during McSherry’s freshmen year. She finished 19-over par and came through last on the team’s lineup. Since then, she has become more successful in her game and adapted to K-State.
Her team has always been her biggest fans and they never fail to pick her up when she is down.
“The team is so amazing,” McSherry told K-State Sports. “Coach [Kristi] Knight is always saying to me how good I am and that she recruited me for a reason.”
The women’s golf team team will next travel to Madison, Wisconsin, Sept. 22 for the East and West Match Play, hosted by the University of Wisconsin.