Super Sophomore Profile - Kendra Hanson

Success isn't anything new to ISU women's golfer Kendra Hanson. She was a three-time state qualifier and the 2003 overall champion and 2004 class 3A state champion while attending Forest City (Iowa) High School.

Her two-round total of 147 tied the state meet record in 2003. She was also a three-time district champion, four-time North Iowa Conference champion and four-time all-conference performer.

 

Even so her freshman season at Iowa State was a learning experience.

 

"I thought freshman year was very challenging with school and traveling all the time,' Hanson said. "Also playing 36 holes in a tournament was such a big change and being able to stay mentally tough the whole time."

 

Hanson was able to draw from her past successes and also lean on seniors Louise Kenney and Lisa Meshke for a smooth transition to the Big 12 ranks.

 

"Our seniors were great last year," Hanson said. "They gave me a lot of confidence and advice. They told me that freshman year is always a learning experience and things will get better each year. [Former coach Julie] Manning also was very supportive.

 

"If I had a great round or a not so great round she was always telling me that I am a great player and just keep up the hard work and good things will come."

 

Good things have come to Hanson, she notched a 248 at her first Big 12 Championship, tying for 52nd and finished her freshman campaign with a 80.9 stroke average. 

 

Being able to play a lot in the early part of Hanson's career has motivated her a lot.

 

"Having the experience from last year I know I can play with anybody in the Big 12," she said. "I am motivated to become one of the best players in the Big 12 before I am done with my career here at Iowa State."

 

In order to achieve that goal, Hanson said she worked on her short game a lot during the summer.

 

"Everyone in college golf can hit the ball very well," she said. "The biggest difference is who has a better short game and who can get up and down almost 90 percent of the time. I learned a lot of new wedge shots over the summer and that has helped me out this year."

 

Over the next two years Hanson wants to become a first-team all-Big 12 player and qualify for nationals.

 

"I want to have a stroke average of around par or lower by my senior year," she said.

 

Hanson is majoring in elementary education and is also looking at the possibility of doing some coaching.

 

"I hope to be a 3rd-5th grade teacher and I also want to be a coach in a high school some day for either golf or basketball," she said.


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