Kent Roosevelt junior twin sisters Kelly Nielsen and Kasey Nielsen made their college plans official — they are sticking together and staying close to home.
They made oral commitments to attend Kent State on golf scholarships.
The twins, 16, will join the Golden Flashes women’s golf program in 2015. KSU is currently ranked No. 31 in the nation by Golfweek and has won 15 consecutive Mid-American Conference women’s golf championships.
“This is a great feeling,” Kelly said. “It is a great school and it is the best golf program in Ohio. It is an honor to commit and it is nice to put the pressure off to the side.”
Kelly and Kasey live in Kent with their parents, Joel and Sharon, and sister, Kory. Joel Nielsen is KSU’s director of Athletics. Kory is a freshman golfer at Roosevelt. The sisters guided Roosevelt to the state tournament as a team.
“[KSU coach] Greg Robertson and [assistant] Maddi Swaney followed us around for a few tournaments and are really good coaches,” Kasey said. “We felt this would be a good fit for us. The atmosphere is great. We obviously are familiar with everyone and we felt this is the best decision.”
Kasey was named to the Division I All-Ohio second team in 2012 and 2013. She placed sixth at state as a sophomore (70-80) and was 12th as a junior (77-79). She averaged 75.2 shots per 18 holes this past year and was the Portage Trail Conference Player of the Year.
Kasey was medalist at the Lady Rider Invitational with an even-par-70, which set a women’s 18-hole course record at The Fairways at Twin Lakes. She also earned the medalist honor at the Midwest Classic Tournament at Skyland Pines Golf Course with a 73. She has a 3.94 grade-point average and plans to major in sports administration.
The twins said they also considered Seton Hall, Illinois, Georgia Southern and Bradley.
Kelly is a three-time Division I state qualifier and averaged 77.2 shots per 18 holes this past year. She made four all-tournament teams and was a first-team all-conference honoree. During the summer, she was medalist at a Junior PGA Qualifier at Avon Oaks Country Club with a 74. She has a 3.90 grade-point average and plans to major in nursing.