Wahoo’s Haley Thiele won her second title in three years, capturing the 45th Nebraska Women’s Amateur Championship at York Country Club on Friday by eight strokes.
The Husker golfer built a huge lead during the final round, and had breathing room even after making two triple-bogeys in three holes to start her back nine. Thiele made two birdies on the front nine to turn in 34 (-1), stretching her lead, which began at eight, to 12 strokes.
She hit her tee shot out-of-bounds on No. 10, and then found more trouble on the par-5 12th hole, dropping six shots in the stretch. However, it didn’t take her long to recover, as she hit a long drive on the par-5 13th hole and nearly made eagle. She tapped in for her birdie and stuck her tee shot on the par-3 14th to make it back-to-back birdies. She finished with a back nine 42 (+7) to post a final round 76 (+6) for her eight-stroke victory at 220 (+10).
Thiele is the 10th player to win multiple Nebraska Women’s Amateur titles, and she joins five other players who have won twice. It’s also Thiele’s fifth NGA championship win, adding to her 2017 title, 2013 Nebraska Girls’ Amateur title and her two Nebraska Girls’ Match Play titles. She’s now tied for sixth all-time in overall NGA women’s titles.
A junior golfer was the closest competitor to Thiele. Danica Badura, a soon-to-be senior at Aurora High School, shot the best round of the day, a 74 (+4). The University of South Dakota commit made two birdies and six bogeys during her final round to earn runner-up honors at 228 (+8).
A couple of Husker teammates finished in a tie for third at 230 (+20), Kirsten Baete of Beatrice and Megan Whittaker of Elkhorn. Baete, the 2016 Nebraska Girls’ Amateur Champion, shot a final round 78 (+8) and Whittaker, a two-time Nebraska Girls’ Match Play Champion, posted a closing 76 (+6). North Platte’s Baylee Steele, another junior golfer, shot one of the best rounds of the day, a 75 (+5) to get into fifth place at 235 (+25).
The 2016 champion Hannah Thiele of Wahoo, Haley’s younger sister, shot an 80 (+10) to finish at 237 (+27) in sixth. The youngest Thiele sister in the field, Lauren, put together a final round 75 (+5). The 2019 Nebraska Girls’ Match Play Champion finished in seventh at 239 (+29). Lincoln’s Nicole Kolbas (+30), Chadron’s Ricki Hickstein (+36) and Aspen Luebbe of Columbus (+37) rounded out the top 10.
Three flight winners were crowned in the Non-Championship Division as well. Elkhorn’s Sarah Nordlund won the First Flight with a 169 (+21) total, while Bev Guzinski of Tekamah won the Second Flight at 191 (+43). Cairo’s Pat Hancock closed out the Third Flight with a two-day total of 224 (+76).