Sophomore golfer Katelyn Dunstan is driving into this year’s season with plenty of hardware from this summer.
Dunstan earned the 2019 Arkansas Woman Athlete of the Year award from the Arkansas State Golf Association after two outstanding averages in events over the summer.
The young golfer scored 175 and 150 in the Arkansas Women’s Match Play and the Arkansas Women’s Stroke Play respectively, giving her a score of 325 to take home the title.
Dunstan won the tournament by a landslide, being the only golfer to score at least 300 points.
“I never thought I could be Arkansas Player of the Year,” said Dunstan. “I shot low and was able to claim the title.”
This wasn’t the first time Dunstan outshone the competition.
In her first year at Belmont, Dunstan set two new school records: the lowest 10-hole score of 67, and lowest 54-hole score of 216. She also maintained a scoring average of 77.3, coming in at second on the lady Bruins team.
Dunstan credits her success to her “biggest inspiration” — her father, Alistair Dunstan — who sparked her interest in golf at a young age.
“Growing up, my dad was really into golf. I picked it up from him when I was 8 years old and from then on we practiced together until my first tournament when I was 11,” she said.
Dunstan also finds inspiration in Lexi Thompson, her favorite pro golfer.
“She’s constantly on the grind, working hard and doing what she loves to be successful, which is something I like to always live by,” said Dunstan.
With her award-winning summer behind her, she’s looking forward to accomplishing two major goals she has set for her sophomore year — placing top 10 in tournaments and becoming a better student athlete.
“As an athlete you have so much going on in one day,” said Dunstan, “it can be difficult to juggle school, friends, and practice without getting distracted.”
Luckily for her, she won’t be doing it alone.
“I really love working with my team,” said Dunstan, “We’re supportive and always there for each other if we need anything. We all love to set goals together and accomplish them.”
At the midpoint of the fall season, she will take a trip home to receive her award at the ASGA Hall of Fame and Award Ceremony on Oct. 24.
Until then, Dunstan and the lady Bruin golfers will participate in the Arkansas State Lady Wolves Classic tournament Oct. 14 and 15.
This article written by Julieann Challacombe. Photo courtesy of Belmont Athletics.