Swing for the Stars

Kaitlyn Hanna  |  Freshman  |  Westside High School

It’s been quite a freshman year for Kaitlyn Hanna. She was the first female golfer to win State for Westside High School, the first freshman in Class A to win State in 33 years, only the third freshman in 44 years to win the Metro tournament, and the first freshman to win Class A Metro and State in the same year. On top of that, Kaitlyn was also recently named one of five finalists of the prestigious Omaha Sports Commission Awards, Female Athlete of the Year. She has been named to the Super State, All State, and All Metro teams, and in addition to her golfing achievements, she also played on the state qualifying varsity basketball team, all while holding a cumulative 3.96 GPA. Quite a freshman year, indeed.

Instead of basking in her accomplishments, Kaitlyn recruited her golf teammates as she started the Warrior Girls Golf Camp for girls in third to eighth grades. She wanted to give back to her community and teach other girls how to golf, so she solicited donations from local businesses and non-profits to help break down the financial barrier for girls who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford it. The camp was held at Miracle Hill golf course on May 4th and 79 girls from the Omaha area attended.

Kaitlyn got her first real set of golf clubs at age four. Her dad helped direct the Cox Classic, so Kaitlyn had the opportunity to be around pro golfers, even hosting a golfer in their home for six years. In 2016, the family went to Augusta for the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals. She cherishes the memory, and said, “Not everyone gets to go to the Masters. It’s the most unbelievable golf course in the world.”

Westside golf coach Barry Glanzer said, “Kaitlyn is the ultimate athlete. She not only has the physical tools, but her mind is exceptionally strong. She is confident, yet humble.” This past year, Kaitlyn beat the school record (75) and then went on to beat her own school record four more times, setting the record at 70. When asked about future goals, Kaitlyn replied, “This summer I want to break 70, become more consistent with my swing, and work on one-putting. If I stay present and focus on smaller goals, the future will take care of itself.”

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