Miu TakahashiMiu Takahashi
Women's Golf

Huskers Head to Arizona for Westbrook Spring Invitational

The Nebraska women’s golf team makes its only trip west during the spring season when the Huskers compete in the Westbrook Spring Invitational, Feb. 25-26.
The 54-hole tournament at Westbrook Village Golf Club in Peoria, Ariz., begins with the first and second rounds on Sunday, Feb. 25, with a shotgun start at 9:30 a.m. (CT). The event concludes with a final round on Monday, Feb. 26 at 9:30 a.m. (CT).
Live scoring for the Westbrook Spring Invitational will be available through GolfStat.com.
The Huskers will be part of a strong 14-team field on the par-72, 6,248-yard layout at Westbrook Village. All 14 teams are ranked among the top 105 in the country, led by No. 32 South Florida, No. 40 Kansas and No. 43 Colorado State, along with No. 52 Minnesota, No. 53 Oklahoma and No. 58 Kansas State. 
No. 67 Nebraska, which has a history of success at Westbrook, is hoping to make a move up the national rankings as it approaches the heart of its spring schedule. Last season, the Huskers won the Westbrook team title with a three-round score of 843 (286-280-277). It was Nebraska’s second title in the past four Westbrook invitationals, joining a trophy in 2019.
Kelli Ann Strand, who led Nebraska with a fifth-place finish (209, -7) at Westbrook last season, carries a team-best 71.06 stroke average to Arizona. The sophomore from Challis, Idaho, is ranked No. 105 individually in NCAA Division I after tying for 11th with an even-par 144 at the rain-shortened Spartan Sun Coast Invitational (Feb. 18-19) in Sarasota, Fla. Strand opened the spring with a tie for sixth in a 96-player field at the UCF Challenge in Orlando (Feb. 3-5). Her three-round total of 210 (-6) helped her claim Big Ten Golfer-of-the-Week honors (Feb. 7). She owns five top-15 finishes in six tournaments this season.
Lindsey Thiele will play out of the No. 1 spot in Nebraska’s lineup at Westbrook, after her season-best tie for seventh (143, -1) in Sarasota. The senior from Wahoo, Neb., ranks second among the Huskers with a 73.63 stroke average on the year.
Miu Takahashi, who posted a top-10 finish with her tie for eighth (212, -4) last year at Westbrook, has joined Strand in the Nebraska lineup for all 17 rounds this season. The junior from Nasu-Machi, Japan owns a 74.00 stroke average. Takahashi was the first international golfer in history to be named the Nebraska Amateur of the Year in November of 2023.
Freshman Arden Louchheim and senior Michaela Vavrova round out the Husker lineup.
Westbrook Spring Invitational
Feb. 25-26, 2024
Peoria, Arizona
Westbrook Village Golf Club (Par 72, 6,248 Yards)
Sunday, Feb. 25 (Rounds 1 & 2) - 9:30 a.m. (CT) - Shotgun
Monday, Feb. 26 (Round 3) - 9:30 a.m. (CT) - Shotgun
Live Scoring: Golfstat.com
Participating Teams (14)
Colorado State (43), Iowa (94), Kansas (40), Kansas State (58), Minnesota (52), Missouri (82), Nebraska (67), North Florida (87), Oklahoma (53), Rutgers (103), Sam Houston (72), South Florida (32), UNC Wilmington (86), Wisconsin (76)
Nebraska Lineup (5-count-4)
1. Lindsey Thiele, Sr., Wahoo, Nebraska
2. Kelli Ann Strand, So., Challis, Idaho
3. Miu Takahashi, Jr., Nasu-Machi, Japan
4. Arden Louchheim, Fr., Park City, Utah
5. Michaela Vavrova, Sr., Bojnice, Slovakia
Huskers Pursuing Third NCAA Regional Bid in Four Years
Nebraska earned its second NCAA Regional appearance in a three-year span when the Huskers were selected to compete at the 2023 NCAA Raleigh Regional. It was Nebraska’s 13th all-time NCAA Regional berth dating back to the 1994 NCAA West Regional.
The Huskers, who finished ninth at the 12-team NCAA Raleigh Regional, also competed at the 2021 NCAA Columbus Regional, tying for 15th in an 18-team field in Ohio.
The Huskers made regional appearances in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2021.
Nebraska’s highest regional finish came with a fifth-place finish in a 21-team field at the 2003 NCAA Central Regional at Firethorn Golf Club in Lincoln (May 8-10). The Huskers advanced to NCAA Championship appearances in 2000 (19th), 2003 (22nd) and 2006 (20th).
Sutherland Leads Huskers
In her second season as Nebraska’s head coach, Jeanne Sutherland is in pursuit of her 20th NCAA Regional appearance in 2024. Sutherland, who spent one season as Nebraska’s associate head coach (2021-22), was named head coach on May 5, 2022. She came to Nebraska after spending 10 seasons (2011-21) as the head coach at SMU. She previously spent 15 seasons as the head coach at Texas A&M (1992-2007).
Sutherland has coached three All-Americans, five individual conference champions and three conference players of the year.
In 2018, Sutherland was named the inaugural winner of the WGCA Kim Evans Award. She also earned the WGCA Founders Award in 2017. A four-time conference coach of the year at Texas A&M (3 Big 12, 1 Southwest Conference), Sutherland was also a two-time NCAA Regional Coach of the Year (1997, 2007). She led 13 Texas A&M teams to NCAA Regional play, including four NCAA Championship appearances in 1997 (17th), 2004 (24th), 2005 (22nd) and 2006 (19th). 
Sutherland coached SMU to five straight NCAA bids (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017).
Strand Earns All-Big Ten Honors
Kelli Ann Strand captured All-Big Ten honors as a true freshman in 2022-23.
Strand was one of eight second-team All-Big Ten choices for 2023, while the conference also announced eight first-team honorees.
She capped one of the best seasons in school history by tying for 30th at the NCAA Raleigh Regional, after tying for 20th at her first Big Ten Championship.Strand set a school record with a 72.05 stroke average on her way to final top 115 national rankings by both Golfweek and GolfStat.
Strand has continued to play outstanding golf, leading Nebraska with a 71.06 stroke average over 17 rounds that puts her on school-record pace for the season. Strand produced a runner-up finish with a 206 (-10) at the Dale McNamara Invitational (Oct. 9-10). With rounds of 70-66-70, Strand earned Big Ten Golfer-of-the-Week honors (Oct. 11). She added another Big Ten weekly honor (Feb. 7) after a tie for sixth with a 210 (-6) to open the spring at the UCF Challenge (Feb. 3-5).
The sophomore from Challis, Idaho owns 14 career top-25 finishes, including eight top-10 showings. She claimed an individual title in her collegiate debut at the Green Wave Classic in New Orleans (Sept. 12-13, 2022). Strand tied the school record with a 54-hole score of 202 (-14) at Tulane. She also set the Husker freshman record with a second-round 65 (-7) at the Bayou Oaks South Course. 
Strand fired a 29 (-7) over the back nine in the second round before opening the third round with a 31 (-5) on the front nine, carding a 60 (-12) over those consecutive 18 holes splitting two rounds. The NCAA record for best round of women’s golf is 61. Strand also was named the Big Ten Golfer of the Week (Sept. 15, 2022).
Strand, who earned her second straight Idaho Golf Association Women’s Player of the Year award in December of 2022, won the Idaho Women’s Match Play title. She added a runner-up finish at the Idaho Women’s Amateur. 
During the summer of 2023, Strand qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship. She also advanced to the round of 32 in match play at the Women’s Western Amateur.
Takahashi Named Nebraska Women’s Amateur of the Year for 2023
Miu Takahashi was named the 2023 state Women’s Amateur of the Year by the Nebraska Golf Association. The junior from Nasu-Machi, Japan is the first-ever international winner of Nebraska’s top female amateur award, which dates back to 1997. She claimed the honor after winning the 49th Nebraska Women’s Amateur Championship. She was the first international player to ever win the tournament, dating back to its inception in 1975.
Takahashi also qualified for the 123rd U.S. Women’s Amateur by claiming a spot in Dallas, Texas. She fired rounds of 78 and 73 at the U.S. Amateur in Los Angeles. 
Takahashi owns a 74.00 stroke average over 17 rounds for the Huskers in 2023-24. 
As a sophomore, she was a key to Nebraska’s run to a 2023 NCAA Regional berth, setting the NU sophomore record with a 73.49 stroke average. Her 2022-23 season included an individual title with a career-best 213 (-3) at the Dale McNamara Invitational (Oct. 10-11, 2022). She was named the Big Ten Golfer of the Week (Oct. 12, 2022). 
Vavrova Strong in Fall for Huskers
Michaela Vavrova was Nebraska’s top finisher at its first two tournaments of the fall and played out of the No. 1 spot in the lineup at the Dale McNamara Invitational (Oct. 9-10).
The senior from Bojnice, Slovakia led the Huskers with a career-best 205 (-11) to tie for fifth individually at the Sam Golden Invitational (Sept. 11-12). She fired rounds of 69-68-68 on the par-72, 6,413-yard layout of the Oakmont Country Club in Corinth, Texas, to earn Big Ten Golfer-of-the-Week honors for the second time in her career on Sept. 13.
Vavrova added a 223 (72-77-74) to help NU tie for sixth in a loaded 15-team field at the Mary Fossum Invitational in East Lansing, Mich. (Sept. 17-18). She finished the fall with a career-best 72.92 stroke average over 12 rounds.
Vavrova overcame an up-and-down junior season to help the Huskers advance to the NCAA Raleigh Regional.
The 2022 and 2023 Slovakian Player of the Year, Vavrova has been a key to Nebraska’s success, including her tie for 17th at the 2022 Big Ten Championship. She owns a pair of top-50 NCAA Regional finishes.
Vavrova finished second at the 2022 Slovak Amateur Championship and 12th at the AMUNDI Czech Ladies Challenge. She also represented Slovakia at the 2022 World University Golf Championships in Turin, leading Slovakia to a ninth-place finish.
Vavrova won her first title with a then-career-best 217 (+1) at the Stampede at The Creek in Elkhorn, Neb. (Oct. 4-5, 2021). She was named the Big Ten Co-Golfer of the Week (Oct. 6).
Thiele Plans to Provide Leadership in Senior Season for Big Red
Lindsey Thiele earned her first top-10 finish of the season by tying for seventh (143, -1) at the rain-shortened Spartan Sun Coast Invitational in Sarasota, Fla. (Feb. 18-19). 
Thiele (pronounced TEEL) was Nebraska’s No. 2 finisher at the 2023 Big Ten Championship, tying for 34th (228), helping NU secure a bid to the 2023 NCAA Raleigh Regional.
Thiele finished with a career-best 74.88 stroke average while competing in all 38.5 rounds. She notched a pair of top-25 finishes, including a tie for eighth at the Green Wave Classic to open the season (Sept. 12-13, 2022). 
The most recent of three sisters (Haley, Hannah) to play golf for the Big Red, Thiele is an outstanding student and leader in community service. The Regents Scholar at Nebraska is a three-time WGCA Scholastic All-American and a two-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. She was also a College Sports Communicators Academic All-District VII selection in 2023.
Thiele participated alongside teammate Megan Whittaker in the 2023 Nebraska Life Skills No Filter Service Trip Abroad to Panama.