ARLINGTON, Texas -- UTA women's golf is bolstering its emerging program as head coach Stuart Deane announced the signing of four players to add to the team's inaugural roster in 2017-18.
"Every day that passes, we create history for the women's golf program," Deane said. "Associate head coach Catherine [Matranga] and I are thrilled to have our four signees for 2017-18 to join Rachel Phillips and Allison Wade, our two red shirt ladies next season.
"With an all-Texas recruiting class, we believe we have the best of what Texas junior golf has to offer. Ava Schwienteck is a 5A State Champion. Sydney Garber won Texas Junior Golf Tour Player of the Year. Madigan Murray and Kate Tran have earned multiple high school victories. Sights are set high for the future of UTA women's golf."
UTA announced the addition of a women's golf program on April 13, 2015, UTA Athletics' first expansion since women's tennis in 1983. Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Jim Baker said the decision to build will allow more opportunities for women to compete at the Division I level. Adding a women's golf program also strengthens UTA's presence in the Sun Belt Conference.
Deane was hired as both the men's and women's head coach in May 2015 after serving as a volunteer assistant for the Mavericks. Matranga and Casey Devoll were named associate head coaches in 2016.
Baker introduced the establishment of the Nancy Baker Memorial Women's Golf Scholarship in Sept. 2015 to honor the memory of his late wife. The scholarship has allowed UTA to attract high-caliber recruits and slot student-athletes to immediately compete in upcoming competition.
The Mavericks inked their first two signees in Allison Wade and Rachel Phillips on Dec. 2, 2015 with the pair having to redshirt through the 2016-17 academic year. Deane's plan to have two upperclassmen and four newcomers came to fruition with the duo slated to lead the squad with stability and experience.
"I am thrilled to be adding Ava, Kate, Madigan, and Sydney to our team," Matranga said. "I really couldn't ask for a better group of girls to be joining Allison and Rachel as the first women's golf team at UTA. This is such a talented group of girls and they bring a lot of playing experience with them. I can't wait to see what great accomplishments this team will achieve next year."
Sydney Garber (Rockwall, Texas / Rockwall) -- Texas Junior Golf Tour Player of the Year ... TJGT Prestonwood Country Club Girl's 15-18 Champion ... Hurricane Junior Golf Tour Coosaw Creek Country Club Girl's 14-18 Champion ... 2015-16 first team All-District 11-6A and All-Region honorable mention ... Rockwall HS Female MVP as a junior ... Female Athlete of the Month (12/15) ... Member of the 2015-16 Rockwall team that became District 11-6A Champion and qualified for regional ... Recorded a stroke average of 77.4 as a junior scored a season-low 71 ... 2014-15 first team All-District 11-6A and regional qualifier ... Rockwall HS Female MVP ... North Texas PGA Rockwall Golf & Athletic Club Girl's 15-18 Champion ... North Texas PGA Buffalo Creek Girl's 15-18 Champion.
"Sydney has been a member of the lady jackets for four years. She has been a valuable asset to our program and has been a leader from day one. Sydney is always ready to work and is concerned with her teammates and their improvement as well. She works hard and encourages her teammates to do the same. Sydney will definitely hold her teammates accountable. She is also a player that you can depend on in tournament play. She is always ready to play and will compete each and every shot." -- Rockwall head coach Billy Watkins
Ava Schwienteck (Magnolia, Texas / Magnolia) -- Member of 2015-16 5A State Championship team ... First team All-State, All-Region and All-District honors ... Magnolia earned second place at regionals and sixth at state tournament ... Tied for first at TJGT Tyler Rose Championship ... First place at 2015-16 TJGT Thorntree Country Club Back to School Classic ... Tied for fourth at TJGT Lonestar Girls Invitation last year ... 74 stroke average for the season ... Qualified individually for 5A State Championship as a sophomore ... 2014-15 first team All-Region and All-District selection ... Came in first place at the HGA City Match Play Championship.
"Ava is a solid all-around player. She's a great leader on and off the golf course. She leads by example and she works very hard at her craft. She'll do really well for UTA. Having a player like Ava is a great way to start and to have a solid program." -- Magnolia head coach Jim Bob Jackson
Kate Tran (Arlington, Texas / Martin) -- Champion of 2013 Starburst Junior Golf Classic with scores of 81-75-77 ... 2015 MentalApp Spring Break Champion (40-76) ... Exemptions into 2015 and 2016 Texas Girls' Invitational ... Optimist Qualifier ... Martin Student-athlete of the Month in Sept. 2016 ... Earned fourth at Lone Star Girls' Invitational ... All-District honors as a sophomore and junior ... Champion of Spring Break Open NTPGA Junior All American Tour.
"Kate is a young lady who is focused on becoming an outstanding student-athlete. Kate thrives on competition and has a desire to excel at whatever she attempts. Kate has also responded as a team leader this fall. I have no doubt Kate will be a positive addition to the golf program at UTA." -- Martin head coach Ken Rose
Madigan Murray (McKinney, Texas / McKinney Boyd) -- Qualified for regionals as a junior ... 2015-16 Academic All-District and AP Scholar honoree ... Team captain and MVP with a stroke average of 77 ... Won TJGT Tournament at Bridlewood ... 2014-15 District 6-6A individual champion and regional qualifier ... 2014-15 Mckinney Boyd Scholar Athlete of the Year ... MISD Scholar Athlete of the Week and student-athlete honor roll as a sophomore ... 2014-15 Academic All-District ... Won NTPGA Tournament at Firewheel shooting an even par.
"Madigan is a highly competitive player and always rises to the occasion to deliver what is needed to help her team be successful." -- McKinney Boyd head coach Denise Hatchel
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