Former Jackson State women's golf standout and JSU graduate, Shasta Averyhardt continues to follow her dream of playing on the LPGA tour. Averyhardt gained some LPGA status at the conclusion of the 2012 calendar year. She will play on the Symetra tour this year.
Averyhardt, a Flint, MI native, was named the Symetra Rising Star for her vast improvement last season. The award recognizes the player who improved the most spots on the official money list from 2011 to 2012.
In 2011, Averyhardt was 152nd on the season-ending money list with $1,645 and last year she improved 114 spots to 38th with $14,362. Her breakthrough season was comprised of four top-25 finishes including a career-best T4th place finish at the Four Winds Invitational.
In 2010, Averyhardt became the LPGA's fourth African American member when she initially gained partial status. She became the first African American to make the tour since LaRee Sugg in 2001. However, just as Averyhardt gained LPGA status tendinitis flared in her left wrist which resulted in swing changes.
She rested and rehabilitated her wrist and in 2012 she had her best season. She ranked third in driving distance with an average of 268 yards and finished sixth in birdies with 132 for the season.
Averyhardt is a 2008 JSU graduate with a degree in Accounting. Tiger fans can follow Shasta on the following webpages http://shastagolf.us/index.html, http://www.lpga.com/golf/players/a/shasta-averyhardt.aspx and http://www.symetratour.com/golf/news/2012/10/averyhardt-rising-star-award.aspx