By Tim Skaggs
Special to the Express-News
See Original: SA Express News Story Link
Web Posted : 05/13/2003 12:00 AM
Some came from across town, while most came from clear across the North American continent.
But all have helped make the St. Mary’s golf program a Division II national contender in only its second year of team competition.
With an effective mix of three players from Calgary, one from Clark High School and another from Victoria, the Rattlers finished second in this year’s NCAA Division II West Regional.
Only Northeastern Oklahoma, a team familiar with the regional site in Muskogee, Okla., finished ahead of the Rattlers at last week’s tournament. St. Mary’s had a seven-stroke lead at the turn.
The St. Mary’s team of senior and sophomore sisters Jillian and Nicole Wyne, juniors Kate Meyer and Chelsea Siler and sophomore Catherine Carvajal will try for the Division II national title in a four-day, 72-hole format starting Wednesday at Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla.
“All of these girls are top academic kids,” St. Mary’s coach Cindy Krause said. “There are a lot of golf courses in this area, so there is a lot of local talent.
“But you also have a lot of players who come down from Canada for instruction and discover they can play in San Antonio year-round.”
The St. Mary’s women’s program started three years ago and began competition last season, but has flourished because of the school’s academic reputation.
Two of the St. Mary’s Canadians are the Wyne sisters.
Krause said Jillian Wyne transferred from Division I Kent State because of academic preferences, and, according to Golfstat.com, Wyne has become the top-rated Division II player in the country.
Wyne said she not only likes the academic side of attending St. Mary’s, she also enjoys San Antonio’s warm weather.
“It makes a big difference when you don’t have to spend six months inside, just hitting balls into the net,” Wyne said. “It is nice to be outside every day.”
Krause said Nicole Wyne transferred from Division I Southwest Texas, also because of an academic preference.
And with fellow Canadian Siler, Carvajal of Clark and Meyer of Victoria, the Rattlers formed their first team, which missed nationals by only three strokes last season.
This season, they beat every Division II and III contender in eight of nine tournaments, and spent much of the season ranked between No. 3 and No. 6 nationally.