Hunnell swings for success at Xavier

Lyndsey Hunnell did not start swinging a golf club until the age of 12. In middle school, she was choosing whether to play golf or basketball. Today, she is a veteran leader on the Xavier women’s golf team.

Hunnell, a native of Roanoke, Va., began playing in golf tournaments when she was in middle school.

“My dad would get me to every tournament and would walk the course with me,” she said.

Hunnell played high school golf at Lord Botetourt High School in Virginia and chose to play college golf close to home at the University of Virginia.

During her time at Virginia, she majored in media studies and redshirted her freshman season. On top of being a student-athlete, she also worked for the Virginia football program while in Charlottesville.

Throughout her golf career, Hunnell has received several accolades.

Some of her other accomplishments before her time at Xavier include winning the 2015 and 2016 Roanoke Valley Golf Hall of Fame tournaments, winning the 2015 Roanoke Valley Women’s Golf Association City-County championship, winning the Roanoke Valley Women’s City County Tournament in 2012 and being named Roanoke Valley Girls’ Player of the Year in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013.

She was also a Virginia All-State selection in 2012 and 2013.

In 2016, Hunnell qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship.

Hunnell, a graduate student working toward a master’s degree in sport administration, had one year left of eligibility.

“After I got the release from my coach at UVA, I started looking at other schools, but Xavier was my top choice and they had gotten back to me first,” Hunnell said. “So, I chose to be part of the Xavier program.”

During spring break, Hunnell helped Xavier place first of 13 in the Jackrabbit Invitational at Boulder Creek Golf Club in Boulder City, Nev. Xavier also claimed fourth place of 14 in the Pizza Hut Lady Thunderbird Invitational at Sunbrook Golf Course in St. George, Utah, on the same trip.

“My adjustment has been good, but (Xavier) is definitely different from UVA. I am not in the dorms, so it wasn’t so easy to meet people, but my teammates have become great friends and I live pretty close to some of them off campus,” Hunnell said.

Throughout her seven tournaments this season, Hunnell has composed an average score of 74.74 per round.

Xavier will play in two more tournaments before the Big East Championships from April 19-21 at Callawassie Island Golf Club in Okatie, S.C.

In her spare time, Hunnell enjoys doing portrait photography as well as knitting for her Etsy business.

After a competitive interview process in Atlanta, Hunnell was selected to be an intern for the American Junior Golf Association, which she will begin after she completes her master’s degree in May.

She is awaiting her placement location but hopes that she will be placed in the West Coast to help coordinate the junior golf tournaments there.

In the long term, Hunnell hopes to someday be an athletic director or a golf coach. She is an avid Cubs and Packers fan, and she hopes Virginia’s basketball will redeem itself in this year’s NCAA Tournament.

By: Michael Rauber | Staff Writer