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Lone women’s golf senior Khaw leads team with poise

Lone women’s golf senior Khaw leads team with poise

North Texas golfer Nyca Khaw is the only senior on the women's golf team and is originally from Malaysia. Sara Carpenter

Lone women’s golf senior Khaw leads team with poise
October 19
20:04 2017

Growing up, senior North Texas women’s golfer Nyca Khaw did not have any interest in the sport.

Like most kids, golf never really caught her attention. That is, until one day when she decided to follow her dad to the course. Khaw was 14 years old when she fell in love with the game, and she decided to pick up the sport and pursue it throughout high school.

Now, she’s a key leader for the Mean Green.

Khaw, who was born in Selangor, Malaysia, came to Denton in pursuit of a golf career. She had no family in Texas until earlier this year, when her younger sister Junie accepted a scholarship offer to play golf at Tarleton State University.

“I had a culture shock when I came to Texas,” Khaw said. “The food and people were completely different, but I came to love being in Texas.”

While the journey from Malaysia to Denton isn’t necessarily a common one, the academics and new facilities on the way at North Texas caught her eye during the search for a collegiate program.

“Their facilities were great and so is the business program [at UNT],” Khaw said. “It was an easy decision.”

Khaw was brought into the program by former head coach Jeff Mitchell, who resigned in September 2015. Barry Niemann took over the program for the remainder of that season before coach Michael Akers arrived on campus last spring.

Akers brought assistant coach Kendra Little on staff last season as well, and both coaches were almost immediately impressed with Khaw and her impact on the program.

“Nyca has been an absolute joy to be around since I first arrived at North Texas,” Little said. “She’s always smiling, always has a positive, infectious attitude. Which, in a team environment, is very important. She has steadily improved since last fall and her confidence continues to grow with that improvement. Being the lone senior, she has really stepped up to the plate and led our team in multiple rounds this fall already, and we’re hoping she can continue that excellent form.”

As the team’s lone senior, Khaw executes her game with a level of poise the rest of the Mean Green strives to follow. Her playing style is more relaxed on the team.

Khaw agreed, adding that no moment ever feels too big or too small for her on the course.

“She has a very steady golf game,” Akers said. “She does not get too excited or too upset when she plays.  I call players like that flat-liners. Those are my type of players.”

Khaw’s poise on the course carries into her life as well. She is majoring in finance and earned an internship on the PGA tour last summer, where she traveled to Baltimore and met with title sponsors and learned how to run a business while budgeting and forecasting for each major event.

Khaw can speak four different languages – English, Malay, Mandarin and Cantonese – making her an attractive job prospect in the business world after graduation.

“She will be very successful in whatever path she chooses,” Akers said. “It is so important to be good with people in this world. Nyca is extremely good in that aspect of life. She also works very hard.”

Khaw plans to stay in the United States upon graduation, and while golf isn’t in her long-term plans, it has played a major role in setting her up for success down the road.

“Golf has taught me how to be a team player and has bettered my time management,” Khaw said. “Having such a difficult schedule makes it hard, but I have learned how to get things done.”

A successful career surely awaits Khaw when she graduates after this season, but the Mean Green have a lot left to accomplish with their only senior still in uniform. Khaw has set her personal goals high as her career draws to a close.

“Winning the conference championship is one of our biggest team goals,” Khaw said. “Getting a top 10 finish is something that I want to accomplish personally. Being the only senior on the team, I feel like I need to be a big role model for my teammates this season. This is my last year and I want to enjoy every moment of it because know I am going to miss this.”

Featured Image: North Texas golfer Nyca Khaw is the only senior on the women’s golf team and is originally from Malaysia. Sara Carpenter

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Malik Wright

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