Linn Grant runs her college unbeaten streak to over a year
- Arizona State twitter photo
Earlier this week at the Clover Cup in Mesa, Ariz., Linn Grant shot three straight rounds of 69 to finish 9 under par for a one-shot victory over her Arizona State teammate Olivia Mehaffey.
Mehaffey made a bold run at Grant, closing with a school-record 10-under 62 at Longbow Golf Club, helping the Sun Devils beat arch-rival Arizona by three shots. But in the end Grant lifted the individual trophy, the fifth time the sophomore from Sweden has done so in her brief college career.
Grant has become so used to winning college tournaments that she has all but forgotten the feeling of being outplayed by any of her peers. In fact, it has been over a year since anyone has beaten her, and her personal win streak has stretched to five.
Dating back to a victory at the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational last season, Grant has won or shared individual medalist honors at five consecutive events (including solo wins in the last four).
Four of those events had ten or more teams, which puts her in elite company in Arizona State history. Grant's run of three straight individual titles entering the Clover Cup was the first since Sun Devil Hall-of-Famer Wendy Ward's historic 1995 run, when she claimed the PING/ASU Invitational, Pac-10 Conference Championship, and the NCAA West Regional Championship en route to the Sun Devil team's undefeated season.
Grant told Brently Romine of the Golf Channel that the key to her undefeated run was “not thinking about it, just doing it.”
Likewise, Arizona State head coach Missy Farr-Kaye has credited her "emotional management" and "very short memory", which allows her to stay in the present and separate result from process.
She is also the rare college player who actually took a gap year between high school and college, foregoing the immediate jump into the highly competitive world of college golf and devoting an entire year to preparing herself to be her best from the first day she stepped onto campus. It has paid off.
But don't expect Grant to spend too much time reflecting on the trophies she has already collected. As she told Romine, “I’m just focused on trying to win the next one.”