Kelli Ann Strand of Challis received another golf honor near the end of 2021.
She was named 2021 women’s player of the year by the Idaho Golf Association.
The golf association awards points to players who compete in their sanctioned tournaments every year and the players who garner the most points win the player of the year awards, golf association Manager of Rules and Competition Nicole Bird said. Strand tallied 300 points in 2021, receiving 150 points for winning the IGA tournament of champions and another 150 points for winning the women’s state amateur tournament.
Strand always performs well in IGA tournaments, Bird said. For that matter, Bird said, the teen plays well in all her golf competitions. She had high praise for Strand, complimenting not only her golf skills, but her friendly personality.
Strand said she “kind of knew” where she was in the IGA standings, and knew if she played well in the tournament of champions she had a shot at winning the player of the year award.
“I didn’t really pay much attention though, I just played golf,” she said.
Strand is a senior at Challis High School. She has signed a letter of intent to play golf at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, after being offered a full-ride scholarship to the college. She’ll begin college in the fall. Her older brother, Lane, was awarded a golf scholarship to Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, where he’s a sophomore.
Three other Idaho golfers received the year-end awards from the state golf association.
Josh Gliege, who played five years of collegiate golf, finishing at Boise State University in 2021 after playing four years at Texas A&M, was chosen the men’s player of the year. Gliege is now the golf coach at Wichita State University. Winners of the senior men’s and women’s golf awards were Scott Vermeer and Sheryl Scott, both of Boise. The senior category is open to players who are at least 55.
Strand said she’s met Scott at various golf tournaments in years past, but she doesn’t know either of the men’s winners.