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Grant, Mehaffey Named to ANNIKA Award Preseason Watch List

Sep 24, 2020

Grant Leads Sweden to Third Consecutive European Championship | Mehaffey Makes Cut at LPGA Major | One More Year: Olivia Mehaffey Returns to Sun Devil Women's Golf | Linn Grant Selected to Compete in Palmer Cup

TEMPE, Ariz. – Sun Devil Women's Golf's Olivia Mehaffey and Linn Grant have been named to the ANNIKA Award Preseason Watch List, which was announced on Golf Channel earlier today.
The ANNIKA Award presented by Stifel is awarded annually to the most outstanding women's college golfer, as voted on by players, coaches and media. Both Grant and Mehaffey earned a spot on last year's preseason watch list and on subsequent midseason watch lists. Grant remained in contention for the award a majority of her freshman campaign, advancing all the way to the final 15.

"We are so honored to have Olivia and Linn make the ANNIKA Preseason Watch List," Head Coach Missy Farr-Kaye remarked. "This is an award that both ladies are working toward achieving. We are grateful for the efforts and contributions to women's collegiate golf by the ANNIKA Foundation!" 

The preseason watch list looks a bit different this year due to the unprecedented circumstances. The candidates have been split into two groups, the "Fall 20" and "Spring 10", separated based on who is currently competing. Sun Devil Women's Golf has two student-athletes on the "Spring 10" list, one of only nine schools to have two receive the distinction. Here are the "Spring 10" candidates:

  • Olivia Mehaffey, Arizona State
  • Linn Grant, Arizona State
  • Jaravee Boonchant, Duke
  • Vivian Hou, Arizona
  • Rachel Kuehn, Wake Forest
  • Emilia Migliaccio, Wake Forest
  • Alessia Nobilio, UCLA
  • Gabriela Ruffels, USC
  • Emma Spitz, UCLA
  • Angelina Ye, Stanford

Visit the Golf Channel story for the full preseason watch list.
Already one of the most decorated golfers in the history of the Sun Devil Women's Golf program, Mehaffey recently completed her fourth season in Tempe with a historic achievement. She became just the third four-time All-American in the history of the Arizona State Women's Golf program after being selected to the Honorable Mention team by the WGCA. She joined an exclusive list of Sun Devils to have been named All-Americans after each of their four years, one that includes Sun Devil Athletics Hall of Famer Kellee Booth (1995-98) and current LPGA Tour standout Azahara Munoz (2006-09). 

In addition to the WGCA recognition, Mehaffey was also one of three Sun Devils to also earn All-American distinction by Golfweek, the third consecutive year the senior accomplished the feat. Due to the unique circumstances, Mehaffey has a chance to claim a record that may never be matched. She has the potential to be the first five-time All-American not only in program history, but in NCAA history.

Mehaffey's international resume is just as impressive as her collegiate one. Not only has she been able to take advantage of several professional opportunities recently, the star amateur has also been recruited to compete in International competition. Mehaffey was selected to represent Team Europe along with teammate Linn Grant at the 2020 Palmer Cup, which will now take place in December. She also was invited to the Augusta National Women's Amateur for the second consecutive year (Tournament moved to 2021). The extensive international experience and success have helped Mehaffey thrive in pressure situations and prepare for the professional level.
The Arizona State women's golf program has seen its share of breakout freshman seasons. The performance of Linn Grant during the 2019-20 season belongs in the discussion of one of the top freshman campaigns in school history. Grant was rewarded with Second-Team All-American recognition by Golfweek, her second All-American honor following her first season in Tempe. She was spectacular throughout her freshman season, finishing in the Top-10 at five of the seven tournaments.

Despite her inexperience at the collegiate level, she played with a consistency and maturity beyond her years, helping her land on the ANNIKA Award Watch List as one of 15 candidates for National Player of the Year. The highlight of Grant's season happened in Hawaii, as she took home Individual Medalist honors while leading her team to a victory at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational, the only Sun Devil to pick up an individual win. She managed to remain in the Top-10 of the Golfstat Individual Rankings all season long, eventually settling at No. 8 in the final edition. 
Currently ranked as the No. 6 female amateur in the World, Grant recently led Sweden to their third straight victory at the European Team Championships. The up-and-coming star will have the opportunity to gain additional experience on a big stage, as she was selected to two significant amateur International tournaments, the Palmer Cup in December and Augusta National Women's Amateur in 2021.
A competitive group surrounds Mehaffey and Grant at ASU, as every member of the No. 3-ranked 2019-20 team returns to Tempe. With highly-touted freshmen Ashley Menne and Breyana Matthews are added to the fold, the Sun Devils will boast one of the most talented and deep rosters in the country. Under the direction of three-time National Champion Missy Farr-Kaye and newly-promoted Associate Head Coach Michelle Estill, the team will receive the proper coaching and guidance that it takes to succeed at the highest level. Fans of the Sun Devil Women's Golf program have a lot to be excited about.   
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