Maaika Mestl

UNK senior Maaika Mestl of Ogallala is the epitome of a student-athlete. She has a 4.0 GPA and has one of the top scoring averages in school history.

KEARNEY — The University of Nebraska at Kearney women’s golf team qualified for the NCAA Tournament for a third straight season.

The Lopers are one of 12 teams that’ll take part in the NCAA Central Regional from May 6 to May 8 in Muskogee, Okla. at Muskogee Golf Club.

The NCAA regional field, consisting of 48 teams and 24 individuals, was determined by regular-season play throughout the fall and the spring.

The four teams and four individuals who shoot the lowest scores in the regional will advance to the NCAA Championships from May 14 to May 18 in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

UNK finished 11th each of the last two years. The Lopers are the ninth seed this year and one of six teams from the MIAA to qualify. The Central also includes schools from the Great American Conference and Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.

Back in the fall, UNK played the Muskogee Golf Club and fired a 622 (309-313) over 36 holes to place sixth out of 18 teams. Three Lopers who took part in that tournament will compete next week in Muskogee.

Sophomore Nia Station (77.94) and senior Maaika Mestl (78.78) lead UNK in stroke average with the Lopers having three top-three team finishes this year.

The Lopers finished in a tie for sixth place at the MIAA Championships on Wednesday in Mayetta, Kan. They were 13 shots out of third place.

Station led the Lopers with a 13-over-229 to finish 10th in the conference meet. Senior Danielle Dickerson placed 13th and Mestl came in 22nd.

Central Qualifying Teams

1. Northeastern State (MIAA automatic)

2. Arkansas Tech (GAC automatic)

3. Southwestern Oklahoma State

4. Central Missouri

5. Central Oklahoma

6. Henderson (Ark.) State

7. Minnesota State-Mankato (NSIC automatic)

8. Missouri Western State

9. Nebraska-Kearney

10. Lindenwood

11. Southern Nazarene (Okla.)

12. Oklahoma Baptist