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Longtime women’s golf coach Sue Nyhus announces retirement

4/21/2021 | UVU Women’s Golf

OREM, Utah – After 11 successful seasons at the helm of Utah Valley University women’s golf and 22 years in all as a collegiate coach, UVU women’s golf head coach Dr. Sue Nyhus has announced her retirement and will call it a career following the conclusion of the 2020-21 season.

The first and only golfer in USGA history to have played in every championship offered to her by the organization, Nyhus truly helped Utah Valley women’s golf go from an inexperienced NCAA Division I program into a very competitive force on the course today.

Earlier on Wednesday, Nyhus helped guide UVU freshman Victoria Estrada to the program’s inaugural WAC individual championship en route to earning the program’s first NCAA Regional bid. Nyhus will continue to lead the Wolverine women’s golf program throughout the 2021 postseason.

“I would like to thank the UVU presidents I’ve worked under, Matthew Holland and Astrid Tuminez, for their support of me and our women’s golf team. Additionally, I extend my gratitude to athletic directors Mike Jacobsen, Vince Otoupal, and Dr. Jared Sumsion, for encouraging the program to grow and helping us celebrate the successes along the way,” Nyhus said. “Over the years I have had several assistants who mostly served as volunteers. Via Wightman, Devin Dehlin, Jackie Booth, and Juli Erekson are now, and will forever be, dear friends. Teamwork makes the dream work. I would like to make special mention of head UVU men’s golf coach Chris Curran. We have made a great team these past 11 years. I am going to miss brainstorming and sharing ideas with Chris.

“I would also like to thank the supporters of UVU women’s golf. Specifically, I am grateful to all the local PGA professionals who have helped me build the UVU women’s golf program. I so appreciate their effort to support our team always. I have also been so blessed by the many student-athletes I have had the distinct opportunity to coach. Being with the student-athletes has been a great joy in my life. Their belief in themselves is so important to me. Working with these great student-athletes gave meaning to my life. Each one has touched my heart in a permanent way. Moreover, I am grateful to the parents of all the student-athletes who shared their amazing daughters with me.”

After coaching at her alma mater of BYU from 1998-2009 (2001-2009 as head coach), Nyhus then moved over to UVU and went on to become the longest tenured coach in program history after leading the Wolverines from 2010-2021.

In Utah Valley’s last full season of competition (2018-19), Nyhus helped guide her Wolverines to arguably their best year in program history as her team finished just three strokes back to place third at the 2019 Western Athletic Championship (289-299-300-888). Nyhus also had a pair of players earn all-conference accolades that season in three-time All-WAC honoree Carly Dehlin Hirsch and 2019 selection Kaylee Shimizu.

During her time at UVU, Nyhus coached a total of 11 all-conference honorees, as well as conference athlete of the year, conference newcomer of the year, and conference freshmen of the year selections. During just her second season at the helm (2011-12), she helped Lynn-Marie Nagel earn top medalist honors at the Great West Conference Championship as well as her team earn a second-place team finish en route to earning GWC Coach of the Year recognition that season.

Nyhus also helped her Wolverines improve on their national ranking in nearly every season during her time at Utah Valley. She helped her team achieve a program-best final ranking of 124 following the 2017-18 campaign. She also guided the Wolverines to a trio of team victories as well as helping five different Wolverines earn tournament medalist honors during her tenure.

“I am also grateful to my husband Steve for supporting my coaching passion over all these years, as well as for the patience of our daughters, who have scheduled some of their key life plans around my coaching schedule,” Nyhus added. “Now, I am looking forward to giving back in different ways and enjoying more time with my family, especially my grandchildren!”

Despite all of the successes on the course, Nyhus also helped her Wolverines achieve greatness in the classroom as she coached a total of 37 WGCA All-American Scholars during her tenure at Utah Valley and 49 more academic all-conference performers. She also helped her 2012-13 squad compile the 11th-best team GPA in the nation with a 3.66 grade-point average.

Over the past few seasons, her teams and players have shattered nearly every record in the program’s record book. The 2018-19 Wolverines hold the Low 54-Hole Total of 879 (+27) at the Hobble Creek Fall Classic, the Low 36-Hole Total of 585 (+17) at the 2019-20 Hobble Creek Fall Classic, and her 2019-20 club also holds the Low Round vs Par with a 2-over-par 290 at the NM State Aggie Invitational while her 2017-18 club holds the Low Round overall with a 4-over-par 288 at that season’s Hobble Creek Fall Classic.

“We are truly grateful to Coach Sue Nyhus and everything she and her family have done for the women’s golf program at UVU. We want to thank her for her 11 valiant years of service,” UVU Director of Athletics Dr. Jared Sumsion said. “Sue has been a wonderful ambassador for Utah Valley University and will certainly be missed. Coach Nyhus has undoubtedly elevated UVU women’s golf since she arrived on campus and will leave the program in a better place than she found it. Dr. Nyhus has positively impacted countless student-athletes and community members throughout her storied career-we wish her all the best as she begins this next chapter of her life in retirement.”

While the head coach at Brigham Young, Nyhus was twice named Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year. She also helped lead her Cougars to NCAA Regional appearances in six of her eight years as the head coach, as well as a pair of NCAA Championship appearances. She also led the Cougars to a No. 13 national ranking in 2007 as well as a 17th-place finish at the NCAA Championships that season.

Nyhus is a two-time Utah Women’s State Amateur Champion as well as a four-time Utah Golf Association Senior Women’s Player of the Year. She was also inducted into the Utah Golf Association Hall of Fame just last year (2020) and formerly played professionally for five years on the Women’s Professional Golf European Tour from 1987-1991.

Nyhus holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from BYU, as well as a doctorate degree from the University of Utah. She is also a 2007 graduate of the NCAA Women’s Coaches Academy.

A search for Nyhus’ replacement will begin immediately. Interested individuals should send resumes to UVU senior associate athletic director Cathy Nixon via email at [email protected]

Courtesy: UVU Athletics Department