Mia Kness, a freshman on the women’s golf team, is making strides in her first year and has the Pirates heating up in time for the Big East Championship.
From the time she stepped on the collegiate course, Kness not only kept up with the competition, but also shot past it. Her strong freshman year began in the fall, with three top-20 finishes in her first four tournaments followed by her first individual title in the Brown Bear Invitational on Oct. 16.
Since then, Kness has continued to impress with two top-10 finishes in the last three tournaments, helping the Pirates secure two wins.
“It’s a coach’s dream come true when you have a freshman come in and perform the way she has,” coach Natalie Desjardins said. “She’s definitely in the running to be the best freshman to come into Seton Hall, if not the best.”
Despite the individual achievements, Kness credits a lot of her accomplishments to her teammates and points to the supportive environment on the team.
“We’re really close and everyone has a really good relationship with each other. Everyone’s just rooting for each other,” Kness said. “There’s just no pressure. Everyone’s supporting each other, and if you have a bad round, they’re there to have your back. That’s what I really love about the team.”
That family bond Kness talks about is a big reason why her, her teammates and her coach are optimistic about the team’s prospects moving forward as they look to earn a fourth Big East title, and the first under Desjardins.
“I think with any successful program, the number one thing you have to have is team chemistry, and this team has had that in the past, and definitely has that now,” Desjardins said.
Kness not only brings a good attitude but also a winning mentality that dates back to her high school days. A native of Venetia, Pa., Kness was a student of Peters Township High School in McMurray Pa., where she won the PIAA High School Championship by shooting an impressive 72-72-144.
Kness was also well-traveled before coming to Seton Hall and found success wherever she went – whether it was the Hudson Junior Invitational in Hudson, Ohio, or the HJGT College Prep Series in Kent, Ohio.
With two more tune-ups left before the annual trip to Callawassie Island, S.C. for the Big East Championship on April 20-22, Kness and her teammates are on the right track.
While it may only be her first season, Kness is proving to be a big part of the Pirates rise back to the top of the conference.
Keith Egan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Keith_egan10.