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Legacy Golfer A
of Colorado women's golfer Erin Kerr was the first CU player to advance
to an NCAA Regional, doing so in 2002 and 2003 while bettering a dozen
school records along the way. She finished in a tie for 15th place at the
2002 NCAA Regional with a three-round stroke total of 223. Kerr completed
her CU career at the 2003 NCAA Regional, tying for 48th place with a 15-over
par 231. Her father, Steve Kerr, lettered in golf for the Buffs in the
late 1970's, making the duo the first father-daughter tandem in school
history to play the same sport for CU. (Keyed in byAllison Gomez, Student
Assistant Sports Information Director, on March 3, 2004).
Kerr was CU's first ever women's golfer to participate in an
NCAA Regional event.
Colorado DailySports Writer
1977, Stephen Kerr was just another CU athlete: a golfer with a
wicked drive and a mischievous grin. This three-time letterman was
overshadowed by the likes of Buffs such as Steve Jones (1996 U.S.
Open winner) and Mark Crabtree (current head coach at Colorado State).
Jump ahead to the year 2000. This time, another Kerr, slightly smaller
this time but with the same smile and an equally wicked drive, is
lighting up the links for the Buffs.
Her name is Erin Kerr. And you guessed it: She’s Stephen’s
daughter. But the similarities end there. After waiting in the wings
for two years at Cal, Kerr was eager for an opportunity to transfer
to CU last fall with one thought in her mind – golf. She came
back to her Colorado roots. And the CU women’s golf program
welcomed her with open arms.
Well, I didn’t play at Cal. And when I transferred here, I
knew all I needed was one chance, an opportunity to get into a tournament
situation,” said Kerr, who was born in Denver. “Coach
(Anne) Kelly gave it to me. And I knew after that, I would be fine.”
Anyone who has seen Kerr launch a golf ball 270 yards also knew
that she would turn out just fine. But after pacing CU in three
of their five fall tournaments, including a third-place finish at
the Heather Farr Memorial, it’s safe to say that Kerr’s
time has arrived now – and with gusto.
I know it wasn’t her best tournament, but she shot a 69 in
the first round of the Big 12 Preview,” said Kelly. “To
watch her play that round, I just saw so many good things in the
way she putted and everything else. I mean, she just hit the ball
a ton. It pointed out to me how good she could really be,” said
Kerr’s 76.92 stroke average leads the team (the next-best
CU golfer is senior Katy Nolan, who is nearly two strokes behind
Kerr at 78.50 – a sizeable margin in golf). And Kerr’s
performance has eased all of Kelly’s pre-conceived fears about
the quantum leap Kerr was taking into Division I golf, along with
the obvious adjustment period acclimating to her new campus, a new
set of friends and a new home.
She wasn’t really (rusty),” said Kelly, who is in the
midst of her fourth season at the helm of the women’s golf
program. “But not having the collegiate experience makes a
big difference when you’re playing on a team, and all of a
sudden it means something for the team and the university and yourself.
But I think she’s adjusted just fine. She seems happy, and
the team loves her. She’s just fit in really well.”
It’s been tough, but the team has been great. We’re
around each other all the time, so it’s like you’ve
got built-in friends,” said Kerr. “They’ve made
it (the transition to living and going to school in Colorado) a
And as for the added pressure of donning a CU polo just like the
one her father wore 23 years ago?
It’s just (about) focusing. I play my own game. I’m
not going out there to beat anybody. I’m just out there trying
not to beat myself,” insisted Kerr.
And while Kerr has certainly done nothing discernible to beat herself
at the game her father taught her how to play when she was a little
girl, the question remains: Can she finally beat the man who showed
her how to take her first swing?
I think I’ve beat him once my whole life,” laughed Kerr. “And
he was proud of me.”
But probably not as proud as Stephen Kerr was to see his daughter
finally get the chance to play collegiate golf at his alma matter.