LAWRENCE, Kan. As the Kansas women's golf team travels to Louisville, Ky., to kick off its 2013 fall schedule at the Cardinal Cup on Monday, sophomore Mackenzie Thayer hopes to make the most of her opportunity to participate in just the third tournament of her Jayhawk career.
Thayer enjoyed a stellar high school career, racking up 22 wins at Garden City Senior High School. Her high school career was highlighted by the 2011 team 6A Kansas state title.
However, moving up to the Division I level was quite an adjustment for Thayer.
"I had an injury last year and I was not at all used to the competition," Thayer said. "Last year was a learning experience for me and I grew up a lot as a person."
Thayer played in two events as a freshman during the 2012-13 season. She recorded her best round of competition, an 81, at the Jayhawk-Cornhusker Invitational, en route to a seventh place finish.
Thayer hopes to build on the experience she gained last year, as coach Erin O'Neil has chosen her to travel with the team to Louisville to participate in the Cardinal Cup next Monday and Tuesday.
"I'm really excited for the trip to Louisville," Thayer said. "I really want to have a strong start to each of my rounds. I think that will be the key to having a successful tournament."
Overall, Thayer hopes to regain the confidence she had as a high school golfer.
"I was really confident in high school that I could always go out and compete for tournament wins," Thayer said. "College was such an adjustment that I think I lost some of that. One of my main goals for the year is to become more confident as a golfer."
The Cardinal Cup will be a great chance for Thayer to build her confidence and experience and start her sophomore season off with success.
Kansas Lineup for the Cardinal Cup
Yupaporn "Mook" Kawinpakorn (So.)
Thanuttra "Fong" Boonraksasat (RS Sr.)
Minami Levonowich (Jr.)
Pornvipa "Faii" Sakdee (Fr.)
Michelle Woods (Jr.)
Mackenzie Thayer (So.)
Tournament Quick Facts
The 2013 Cardinal Cup will be held at the Cardinal Club in Simpsonville, Ky. The par-72 course, founded in 1998, measures 6,163 yards and is the home course for the Louisville Cardinals men's and women's golf programs.
The Cardinal Cup is a 54-hole event with 36 holes played Monday, Sept. 16, and 18 played Tuesday. The field consists of 13 teams and 12 individuals. Daily team scores are computed by totaling the lowest four scores of the five team members.