Laura Cilek wrapped up her first season with the Oregon women’s golf program and saw the Ducks advance to the NCAA Championships, held on their home course at the Eugene Country Club. After sitting in 15th after the first day, Oregon shot a 6-under 282, the fifth-lowest round ever in Oregon golf history. That same round featured senior Caroline Inglis setting a record of her own as she fired a 7-under 65, marking a career-low round for her and also setting a new course record at Eugene Country Club.
The Ducks made the top eight after four days of stroke play, securing themselves a place in the match play quarterfinals. The fifth-place finish at the Championships was the highest ever for an Oregon team, surpassing the 1997 team’s seventh place finish.
The 2016 spring season was one of the best in Oregon golf history as the team recorded the second-best scoring average at 294.23 and picked up a tournament victory at the Westbrook Invitational. Junior Cathleen Santoso recorded her second career win as she was awarded medalist honors at the Silverado Showdown, overtaking Stanford’s Lauren Kim in the final round to win by one stroke. For the spring, Oregon recorded five top-five finishes and never finished lower than eighth.
Three Ducks were honored by the conference for their academic efforts. Junior Cathleen Santoso was named to the Pac-12 All-Academic second team, making her a multi-year honoree. Senior Caroline Inglis was named honorable mention for the third straight year and sophomore Kelsey Ulep was an honorable mention selection, her first career accolade.
Cilek, who was a three-year captain at Iowa before graduating in 2011, worked as an assistant at MTSU for the past two seasons. She was an assistant at her alma mater from 2011-13.
With MTSU, Cilek helped the Blue Raiders break school records for best team round, best individual round and best three-round tournament total (both team and individual). Under her guidance, MTSU earned four tournament championships, three individual titles and four Conference USA player of the week honors over two seasons.
During her stint at MTSU, Cilek also served a four-month internship at the Jason Floyd Golf Academy in Malaga, Spain, during the summer of 2014. She worked over 150 hours of lessons using the latest teaching technologies.
Cilek was awarded her master’s degree in sports administration this spring from MTSU.
After graduating from Iowa in 2011, Cilek joined the Hawkeye coaching staff. She helped Iowa post record scoring averages each year while she continued her own golfing career, finishing runner-up at the 2012 Iowa State amateur and winning the 2012 Iowa City amateur. She qualified and played in the 2013 USGA amateur public links, winning the Iowa Match Play championship.
During her collegiate career at Iowa, Cilek was named academic all-Big Ten in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and was a dean’s list selection in 2008 and 2010. She was voted team captain in 2009, 2010 and 2011.