Hayley Thompson was part of history in 2019, the lone senior on Chanhassen girls golf’s state championship team. A member of a squad that fired an 18-hole team score of 309 at state, a school-record.

In her final year at Bethany Lutheran College, set to graduate after just three years, Thompson was part of history once again Oct. 7-9 at Pebble Creek Golf Club.

A final round of 78, both a Bethany Lutheran and UMAC Championships record, helped her move up one position to earn the individual title. In the process, she also broke multiple program and UMAC records over 36 holes (score of 164) and 54 holes (score of 250).

“Hayley works really hard. She grinds at practice, she grinds at tournaments; for it to all come together at the conference tournament is really cool to see,” Vikings head coach Josh Pederson said.

Thompson is the third Bethany Lutheran women’s golf to win a conference title; the first since Abigail Lacy in 2008. She received all-league honors all three seasons on the team.

“Winning the UMAC Tournament was definitely an exciting way to finish off my college golf career! Going into the final day of the tournament, I focused on having a positive attitude and reminded myself to enjoy the round. I believed I had the skills to win, but really concentrated on a relaxed mindset and taking one shot at a time,” Thompson said.

Thompson, already in the clubhouse atop the leaderboard, had to wait for all of the golfers to come before celebrating.Payton Sierra of Minnesota-Morris, the second-day leader by four strokes, carded a final-day score of 85.

A three-stroke win for Thompson.

“After playing, I was very emotional once I learned that I achieved a new personal record. The win felt very surreal, and also being voted player of the year was such an honor. My parents and family, coaches, and friends and teammates, were all very instrumental in my journey, especially for my mental preparation,” Thompson said.

This will be Thompson’s final season with the program. On the impact she has left, Pederson said, “monumental. We are very proud of her and her career, as she leaves as the best player in program history.”

Thompson, of Victoria, has hopes of landing a position in human resources or management upon graduation. While her collegiate playing days are through, she plans to still play golf recreationally in local events and league play, and will continue to caddy at Hazeltine National for as long as she can.

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