Beyond the Game: Franklin native Mary Joiner enjoying historic season for WKU golf

By  | 

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO)-- It was only three years ago when Mary Joiner wrapped up her stellar golf career at Franklin-Simpson High School, which included first team all-state honors, a Region 4 championship and finished tied for third at the 2015 Leachman Buick GMC Cadillac/KHSAA State Golf Championship.

Now, in only her sophomore season at WKU, Joiner was awarded her third Conference USA Women's Golfer of the Week honor after her program-record fourth career victory last weekend at Eastern Kentucky's Colonel Classic.

"I felt pretty confident but I didn't expect this," Joiner said about her early success. "I knew I could compete but winning four times was never really on my radar so it's really cool.

"But all-in-all getting a win is all I could ask for."

Joiner had a pretty impressive freshman season as well, playing in 11 tournaments, leading her team in four events.

This season, she's won the weekly conference award in three of the last five weeks, something that no other women's golfer in CUSA has accomplished. And coach Adam Gary knew when Mary signed on the dotted line to come to the Hill, he knew he had a steal.

"She's a very competitive person and I think that's what drives her too," Gary said. "I think having good players on the team because when she was at Franklin it was hard getting females to come out to compete, so she kind of did it as an individual.

"Now that she's up at Western having players push her a little bit, kind of stirs up that competitive nature in her some, so I think that's been a big factor in her improving and her success so far."

The Lady Toppers begin play in the Conference USA Championship next week in Fort Myers, Florida, and Joiner believes there's still a lot on the table for this team.

"I think the team, we're really starting to compete and get better. I look forward to seeing how we do at Conference (Tournament) because this team can go a long way."