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ND Women’s Golf: New links coach takes ND reigns

Chris Hine | Thursday, August 31, 2006

The search is over.

Notre Dame named Susan Holt its women’s golf coach Wednesday, replacing Debby King. Holt becomes the fourth head coach in school history.

“I’m really looking forward to becoming a part of the Notre Dame family,” Holt said in a statement released by the Notre Dame athletic department Wednesday. “The commitment to the golf program with the course and the new indoor facility makes a statement. As a coach you want to know that you have a chance to be successful and you can tell that’s how it is at Notre Dame and it’s impressive to see that.”

Junior captain Alejandra Diaz-Calderon, who was one of three players who took part in the interview process for a new coach, praised Holt’s hiring.

“I’ve met her before and I know she’ll be a great fit for Notre Dame,” she said. “She’ll bring stability and motivation to the program and she’s someone we can relate to.”

Holt was the head coach at the University of Southern Florida for the past 13 seasons, and was head coach at Purdue from 1990-93. While at USF, Holt was named Conference U.S.A. Coach of the Year three times – in 1996, 1999 and 2001 – and was named Coach of the Decade (1995-2005). Her teams at USF won five Conference USA titles, made 11 trips to the NCAA Regional Tournament and twice made trips to the NCAA Championship Finals.

Holt’s teams have also excelled off the course, with her teams averaging a GPA of 3.24 the past 12 seasons and 75 times her players achieved all-Conference U.S.A academic team honors.

“First and foremost, I was attracted by the opportunity to come to what I believe is the best academic and athletic combination that’s out there,” she said.

Diaz-Calderon said her reputation speaks for herself.

“My cousin [Mary Maritere-Calderon] goes to South Florida and she told me, ‘You guys are really lucky to have her,” she said.

Assistant Coach Kyle Veltri, who led the Irish while the university searched for a new coach, will stay on as an assistant.

The Irish open the season at the Cougar Classic Sept. 11 in Charleston, S.C.