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Gerlach Named Assistant Women's Golf Coach

Former Southern Illinois star to help program get started.


Navy WGolf vs. Towson

Navy Women's Golf vs. Towson (3-30-13)

Kelly Gerlach Hovland is in her fourth season as the assistant coach of the Navy women's golf program in 2015-16.

In 2014-15, Hovland helped Navy lower its team average by 30 strokes from the previous year and Navy placed third at the Patriot League Women's Golf Championship.

With the arrival of Navy's first fully recruited class, Hovland helped coach four Navy freshmen to top-15 finishes at the Patriot League Championship. Additionally, Navy lowered its program-best scores for both a single round (315) and for a 54-hole tournament (961) in 2014-15.

Christine Walker became the second Midshipmen to earn All-Patriot League Second-Team honors after placing 10th at the league championship.

In 2013-14, Hovland helped Navy lowered its team average the previous season by seven strokes and sophomore Renata Bucher became the first Navy women's golfer to earn All-Patriot League honors. Navy also shaved 26 strokes off its total score at the 2014 Patriot League Championship from the previous season's league meet.

Bucher tied for seventh place at the Patriot League Championship to earn All-Patriot League Second Team honors. Bucher also became the first Navy women's golfer to be the medalist of a tournament when she won the Navy Spring Classic. Bucher had four top-10 finishes in her final five events of the season and led the team with a stroke average of 81.5.

During the introductory 2012-13 season, Hovland helped the Midshipmen to a third-place finish at the inaugural Patriot League Championships, despite having the services of no recruited athletes. Bucher, a freshman, led the team in stroke average and was named to the WGCA Scholar All-America Team.

Hovland, a Sparta, Ill., native, is a 2007 graduate of Southern Illinois University where she earned a bachelor's degree in political science and a master's degree in public administration. While at SIU, she served as a two-time captain of the women's golf team, leading the Salukis to the 2007 Missouri Valley Conference title and a berth in the NCAA Championships.

As a freshman in 2004, Hovland won the Missouri Valley Conference individual title and earned All-MVC honors all four seasons of competition. She was a two-time Academic All-American (2007 and 2008) and was a three-time member of the Missouri Valley Conference All-Scholar Team. She was also named to the Missouri Valley Conference All-Centennial Team, which honored the top 20 golfers in conference history.

Following her career at SIU, Hovland began a career in public policy that included positions in both state and federal government as well as the private sector, which precipitated her move to Washington, D.C.

Hovland is Class A LPGA Professional.

Along with duties as assistant coach for the women's program, Hovland also serves as an assistant professional at the United States Naval Academy Golf Club.

The former Kelly Gerlach is married to Ben Hovland. They are the parents of a newborn daughter, Harper. The family resides in Washington, D.C.


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