Illinois State Golf Endowment Recipients Announced


NORMAL, sick. РChief Golf Coaches of the State of Illinois Ray kralis and Br̩anne Room announced the student-athletes who have been selected as recipients of prestigious scholarships, and this year five deserving and outstanding student-athletes were selected for these honors.

The 2021-2022 winners of the five endowment grants dedicated to golf are seniors Joe Hodgson and Andrew O’Brien, in addition to the juniors Ali schrock, Maria Toledo Bailey, and Felix van Dijk.

Durwood L. Boone Scholarship Recipient // Joe Hodgson, Senior, Adelaide, South Australia
Across three tournaments in the 2021-22 season, Hodgson is averaging 75.1 strokes per round, including 67 at his career low at the Badger Invitational, helping the Redbirds claim the tag team title. Of his nine rounds this season, three have been equal to or below par. During his career, he played 45 rounds, averaging 75.3 strokes.

This scholarship was established through an initial grant from the estate of the late L. Durwood Boone, whose playing skills inspired the start of the Redbird golf program in the 1930s. It was first awarded to a golfer Redbird in 1995.

Helen Cushman Scholarship Recipient // Ali schrock, junior, Pontiac, Illinois
Schrock has played in all six rounds for the Redbirds this season and is averaging 73.5 strokes per round – the team’s second-lowest scoring average. She has two rounds this season at or below par across two tournaments. Over the course of her career, she played singles and averaged 77.0 strokes per round, a total that currently places her at number four in the school’s record books.

In January 1995, the Helen Cushman Endowed Scholarship Fund was established with a donation from the late Pat and Nina Chesebro to benefit the Illinois Girls’ Golf Program and to honor their close friend, Helen Cushman. The couple decided to set up the fund before Pat died as a thank you to Cushman, who introduced them to golf.

Recipients of the James and Carole Mounier endowment scholarships // Maria Toledo Bailey, junior, Birmingham, England // Felix van Dijk, junior, Tilburg, Holland

Maria Toledo Bailey, MVC 2021 Newcomer of the Year, returns and leads the Redbirds in average shots in the first two tournaments of the year. She played in four rounds and averaged 73.0 strokes per round, with two rounds equal to or less than par. She finished fourth at the 2021 Redbird Invitational, en route to earning MVC Golfer of the Week honors.

van Dijk recently played at the 2021 Dutch Junior Open between tournaments and has made six rounds this season for the Redbirds. He’s averaging 76.2 strokes per round this season, with one below par. His season-low 70 round came in the second round of the Badger Invitational, where he helped the ISU tie a school record in one lap.

The Mounier scholarship was created in 2007 by James and Carole Mounier. Jim and Carole are proud graduates of the State of Illinois who have been active in Greek life – Sigma Nu and Delta Zeta. They both love golf and believe the sport builds character and success in life. The scholarship is awarded annually to a male and female golf student-athlete.

DA Weibring scholarship recipient // Andrew O’Brien, senior, Clive, Iowa.
Was named All-MVC last season after finishing fourth in the 2021 MVC Championship. This season he is averaging 75.2 strokes per round and averaging 74.7 in 61 career rounds. He recently set a career record in the second round of the 2021 Badger Invitational, where he shot a six-under-66, much of the ISU school’s record-breaking round in the event.

Established in 1994 with the proceeds of the first five DA Weibring Redbird golf classics, the scholarship – named after former golfer Redbird – goes to a current Redbird golfer who meets specific eligibility criteria. The endowment became the first in the state of Illinois to be fully funded.

These scholarships are one of 30 scholarships available to student-athletes in the State of Illinois that are funded by private donors. For more information on creating or contributing to an endowed scholarship, please call the Weisbecker Scholarship Fund office at (309) 438-3803. To learn more about each current endowment, visit the WSF website at and the Illinois State Redbirds app: Your sources for Illinois State Notes, Weisbecker Scholarship Fund giveaways, multimedia, Redbird merchandise, photos and more.

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