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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Kalthoff Leads Mavericks into Postseason

Alyssa Kalthoff has led Minnesota State to a trio of
NCAA DII women's golf tournament appearances

A four-year letterwinner, senior Alyssa Kaltoff is a veteran member of the Minnesota State women’s golf team.

A native of Albany, Minn., Kalthoff came to the Mavericks as a two-time West Central North Conference champion, a four-time high school Most Valuable Player and a participant in the 2010 Minnesota/Wisconsin Cup for the Huskies.

Not wasting any time establishing herself as one of Minnesota State’s top individuals when she averaged 85.2 strokes per round as a freshman in 2010-11, she’s consistently ranked as one of the top small college golfers in the upper midwest during the past four seasons. Kalthoff, who has continued to better her performance as she’s gained more experience, averaged 82.5 as a sophomore and 81.8 as a junior and after placing 26th at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference championship in her first year with the Mavericks, was tenth as a sophomore and eighth in the league as a junior in 2012-13.

A member of MSU teams that have participated in three consecutive NCAA regionals, Kalthoff said her favorite part of being a Maverick is competing with her team.

Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes during her junior season, the 2013-14 captain has encountered her share of adversity, but points to the support of her teammates as one of the reasons she’s been able to maintain success in the classroom and on the course, while dealing with the condition.

“I have to check my blood sugar four times a day, and I’ve had to eat a lot differently. It’s not just an adjustment as an athlete, but it’s just a huge adjustment in general,” said Kalthoff.  Citing a healthier diet and a more robust work-out regime as a couple of keys in making things work, she also talked about the strong support she received from her teammate, junior Tabitha Kunst

“Tabitha was with me when I was diagnosed and stayed in the emergency room with me. She became very knowledgeable about diabetes and has been like my little doctor,” said Kaltoff. 

Long-time Minnesota State women’s golf coach, Nick Campa, said that whenever he brings recruits in, he highlights the team unity at MSU.

“I’ve had kids from other teams who tell me they wish they had the unity we do. Alyssa and Tabitha go out of their way to make sure people feel welcome and it’s really great to see,” said Campa.

The senior golfer said through this hardship and her time at MSU, she has developed long-lasting friendships. Kaltoff hopes to go to graduate school at MSU for exercise physiology and continue to support the golf team as a graduate assistant.

The close-knit team will compete in the final two rounds of the 2013-14 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Championship this Saturday and Sunday in Morton, Minn.

                                                           Contributed by Brenda Martinson, Minnesota State Athletic Communications intern

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