By the Numbers: Missy Farr-Kaye's Five-Year Run
As a player and now coach, Missy Farr-Kaye is golf at Arizona State (AZ Central) | VIDEO: Coach Missy Farr-Kaye Earns 2018 ASU Alumni Achievement Award | Farr-Kaye Named 2017 National Coach of the Year | WGCA West Region Coach of the Year
TEMPE, Ariz. – Missy Farr-Kaye recently celebrated her five-year anniversary as Head Coach of Sun Devil Women's Golf. Join us in taking a look back at the accomplishments of the program during her tenure, one of the most successful starts to a coaching career in Arizona State history.
Vice President for Athletics Ray Anderson announced Missy Farr-Kaye as the 10th head coach of the eight-time NCAA Champion Arizona State Women's Golf team on June 26th, 2015. For the ASU graduate, the moment was a dream come true.
"This is my dream job in every sense of the word," Farr-Kaye said back in 2015. "I grew up playing junior golf at Papago Golf Course. I graduated from Arizona State and won a NCAA Title under Linda Vollstedt. To become the Head Women's Golf Coach of my alma mater is the pinnacle of my career and I have a personal, vested interest in the success of our program. Our goal is to continue to bring home the national title, year in, year out. Arizona State has championship expectations and I intend to deliver."
Coach Farr-Kaye wasted no time delivering on the goals she laid out in her introductory press conference, leading the Sun Devils to the 2017 NCAA Championship in just her second season. As she enters her sixth season, the hire has continued to pay off as the program has maintained its elite status. With her renowned recruiting prowess and ability to develop student-athletes on and off the course, the future looks bright for Sun Devil Women's Golf. Here is a "By the Numbers" look at the highlights of the Missy Farr-Kaye era.
What a run it has been since ????
— Sun Devil W. Golf (@SunDevilWGolf) June 26, 2020
BY THE NUMBERS: MISSY FARR-KAYE'S FIVE-YEAR RUN
2017: In just her second season as Head Coach of Sun Devil Women's Golf, Missy Farr-Kaye led Arizona State to victory over Northwestern at the 2017 National Championship. Behind First Team All-Americans Linnea Strom and Monica Vaughn as well as Honorable Mention All-American Olivia Mehaffey, Farr-Kaye helped Sun Devil Women's Golf capture its' nation-leading eighth NCAA championship in 2017. For her efforts, Farr-Kaye was named Golf Pride Grips WGCA National Coach of the Year, Golfweek National Coach of the Year, West Region Coach of the Year, and Pac-12 Coach of the Year.
3: Missy Farr-Kaye completed a trifecta in 2017, winning her third NCAA Championship as a Sun Devil. She was part of ASU's first title-winning team as a player back in 1990, starting a dynasty under legendary Head Coach Linda Vollstedt. She then helped the Sun Devils capture the crown as an assistant coach (2009). The story came full circle when Farr-Kaye led her alma mater to the 2017 National Championship as a head coach.
10: Farr-Kaye has already mentored ten All-Americans during her five-year run, one of 10 highest totals nationally during that time. She has played a big role in the development of Olivia Mehaffey, who recently became only the third four-time All-American in program history (Azahara Munoz, Kellee Booth). Each of the four All-American selections for Mehaffey came under the tutelage of Coach Farr-Kaye. The 2017 NCAA Championship team featured two First Team All-Americans, 2017 NCAA Individual Champion Monica Vaughn and current LPGA golfer Linnea Strom. Arizona State had three named to All-American teams for the second time during Farr-Kaye's five-year stint in 2020.
20: Not only do Sun Devil Women's Golf student-athletes enjoy success on the course, Coach Missy Farr-Kaye makes it a priority to take care of business off the course as well. A total of 20 Sun Devils have earned All-American Scholar Status from the WGCA/NGCA over the past five years. The academic honors do not stop there, as a Sun Devil has been named to the Pac-12 Academic Honor Roll on 18 different occasions. In 2018, Roberta Liti was tabbed as the Pac-12 Scholar Athlete of the Year, the fifth individual in program history to earn the distinction. In that same season, she became the first Sun Devil to take home the prestigious Elite 90 Award from the NCAA, honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers.
11: The Sun Devils have captured 11 Team Championships over the past five seasons, four of which came in the fabled 2017 season. Arizona State caught fire at the end of the campaign, winning four of the final six tournaments (Clover Cup, PING/ASU Invitational, NCAA Lubbock Regional, NCAA Championship).
10: Since taking over prior to the 2015-16 season, 10 Sun Devils have captured Individual Tournament Titles under Missy Farr-Kaye's watch. The most significant of those victories belongs to Monica Vaughn, as she made an incredible run to become the 2017 Individual NCAA Champion. It was the sixth time in program history that a Sun Devil reached the pinnacle of the sport, with the most recent victory by Azahara Munoz coming back in 2008. Vaughn is one of two Sun Devils to finished first at a NCAA Regional during Farr-Kaye's tenure, with Olivia Mehaffey accomplishing the feat in 2019. Mehaffey is also one of two Pac-12 Individual Medalists mentored by Farr-Kaye, as she won the title in 2019 two years after her former teammate Linnea Strom won the conference's individual championship back in 2016.
8: If you can play, Missy Farr-Kaye and her coaching staff will find you. She recognizes that golf is a global sport, leading her to search for the top talent no matter where they are in the World. During her tenure, Arizona State has had golfers from eight different countries (United States, England, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Spain, Sweden). The international recruiting success has been matched domestically, with Farr-Kaye signing highly-touted golfers from Oregon, Texas, and Arizona. Two more Arizona natives will join the program next year. This blend of culture and diversity offers a truly one-of-a-kind experience for golfers at Arizona State.
3: Sun Devil Women's Golf offers the opportunity to receive national and international exposure. Coach Missy Farr-Kaye encourages her players to compete as often as possible and challenge themselves in the offseason or on some cases during the season. Since Farr-Kaye took over five years ago, a Sun Devil has been selected to the Curtis Cup three times. Olivia Mehaffey made two appearances at the event as part of team Great Britain and Ireland, with Monica Vaughn representing the United States back in 2016. This is not the only prestigious international event that Sun Devils continue to be selected for. Mehaffey and her current teammate Linn Grant were named to the International Palmer Cup team earlier this year. The Augusta National Women's Amateur will include student-athletes from Arizona State for the second consecutive year, as Linn Grant, Amanda Linner, Olivia Mehaffey, Sofia Anokhina, and Alessandra Fanali have all competed at the event. Mehaffey recently received an exemption to compete at the LPGA Tour's ANA Inspiration event, a significant precursor to her aspirations of earning her LPGA Tour card.
SUN DEVIL GOLF = FAMILY
Thanks to her dedication and commitment to Arizona State, Coach Farr-Kaye has become one of the most respected coaches in Sun Devil Athletics. She continues to look for ways to improve her program, recently elevating fellow former Sun Devil golfer and current Assistant Coach Michelle Estill to Associate Head Coach.
"I'm honored to be part of Coach Kaye's team and have the opportunity to learn from her every day," Coach Estill mentioned. "Her knowledge, her passion for her student athletes and ASU and her experience have made ASU Women's Golf a great success under her leadership. I'm excited for the future of this program."
The pair are recognized as one of the top coaching staffs in the country, combining to lead ASU to the 2017 NCAA Championship. They each possess a skill set and expertise that compliments one and other, resulting in the recruitment and development of some of the top female collegiate golfers in recent memory. The relentless attitude and positive mindset of the coaching staff has made them extremely popular among their players, peers, and competitors.
Coach Farr-Kaye has teamed up with Sun Devil Men's Golf Head Coach Matt Thurmond to create one of the most unique and competitive environments in college golf. Coach Thurmond and his program has had plenty of success themselves and is as familiar with the Sun Devil Women's Golf program as any.
Sun Devil Golf is on the rise ??
Two of the best leaders in the collegiate game are continuing to add to the legacy of their programs ??@SunDevilMGolf Head Coach Matt Thurmond shares his thoughts on working alongside Missy Farr-Kaye over the past 4? years ?? #SunDevilFamily pic.twitter.com/O5i3JrDgtc
— Sun Devil W. Golf (@SunDevilWGolf) June 26, 2020
"I've really enjoyed working alongside Missy the past four years," Coach Thurmond remarked. "She does an exceptional job coaching and leading her team. I'm confident we'll all be watching a lot of winning by Missy and the Sun Devil Women's Golf team in the years ahead."
The two teams made the move together to the state-of-the-art Thunderbirds Golf Complex at Papago Golf Course prior to the 2018 season. The culture and comradery that has resulted between the two Sun Devil Golf programs has fueled a rise to national prominence for each. The future of Sun Devil Golf is in great hands with Coach Farr-Kaye and Coach Thurmond at the helm.
HOW TO FOLLOW
For the latest updates and information on the Sun Devil Women's Golf program, follow our Twitter/Instagram accounts (@SunDevilWGolf), like our Facebook page (facebook.com/sundevilwgolf/), and visit our website (thesundevils.com).