Golf: Ashley Holder, Player of the Year
UCF freshman Ashley Holder has been named the American Women’s Golf Player of the Year and American Women’s Golf Freshman of the Year. Holder was a unanimous choice for Freshman of the Year honors and was also named to the All-Conference squad, along with teammates Fanny Cnops, Kaitlyn Price, and Kristine Odaiyar.
“I’m really proud of our team this year and the conference awards are a product of their efforts,” UCF head coach Emily Marron said. “Ashley Holder has been very consistent all year and is very deserving of these honors. It’s very rare to have a freshman talented enough to sweep both awards and I’m extremely proud of Ashley’s play this season.”
Holder played in all 10 events this season and led the Knights with five top-ten finishes and a 72.7 scoring average. She shot par or better nine times this season and carded a season low-round of 67. Her best finish came at the LSU Tiger Golf Classic, where she tied for first place.
“I am greatly honored to receive these awards,” Holder said. “This has been an unforgettable year and I am thankful for the support of my teammates and coaches. I could not be more proud of the hard work and dedication we have all put in.”
Holder, an Orlando native, first caught fire in October when she made a hole-in-one at the Par-3 13th hole at Sahlaee Country Club, during the Edean Ihlanfeldt Invitational in Seattle, Wash. Two weeks later she would finish second overall at the Las Vegas Collegiate showdown and be named the American Athletic Conference Golfer of the Month.
Her success continued into the second half of the season when she shot her three-day best 213 (-3) helping the Knights win the UCF Challenge. She went on to lead UCF at the conference championship finishing third overall.
UCF’s honors continued with senior Katilyn Price, junior Fanny Cnops, and freshman Kristine Odaiyar being named to the All-Conference team.
Price was solid all season playing in nine of the ten events for Knights. She maintained a 74.9 scoring average throughout the season and finished fifth overall at the Florida Shootout, helping the Knights to team victory.
Cnops took individual medalist honors at the UCF Challenge and has been the Knights top finisher five times this season. She was awarded conference golfer of the week honors in late February and was granted an exemption to play in the 2014 IOA golf Classic in March where she finished tied for 44th in a field of 142 professionals.
Odaiyar’s best showing this season came at the Central District Invitational where she finished tied for third with teammate Cnops. She competed in seven events for the Knights this season posting a single-round low of 68 and a 74.4 scoring average.
The No. 17 Knights have turned in top-three finishes at eight of their ten events this season including back-to-back wins at the Florida Shootout and the UCF Challenge. UCF will compete as the No. 6 seed in the NCAA Eastern Regional May 8-10 in Tallahassee, Fla.