Ingrid Lindblad (left) & Latanna Stone. Photos courtesy LSU Athletics

LSU women’s golf stars Ingrid Lindblad and Latanna Stone are attracting national attention

When I was first given this opportunity to inform readers about sports, I made a promise to myself that I would do my best to bring attention to not just the big names, but also the stories under the radar that deserve the same recognition. As much as I love seeing powerhouse athletes like Angel Reese and Haleigh Bryant dominate social media feeds with record-breaking performances this season, I want to also tell the stories of the athletes who aren’t on every billboard but still have a story that’s impossible to root against.

When I discovered LSU women’s golf was ranked fourth in the NCAA, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to learn more.

Did you know that the No. 1 amateur female golfer in the world, Ingrid Lindblad, plays for LSU? She and teammate Latanna Stone have qualified for the Augusta National Women’s Amateur (ANWA) taking place at the historic course this month. Considering it took Augusta 78 years to allow women to play on its course, it’s exciting to learn of a tournament of this scale allowing female golfers a platform. It speaks to a bright future for women in the sport.

Lindblad, who began playing at age 5 with her cousins and brothers, spent her summers in Sweden learning golf without the pressure or expectation that she be the best in the world. “In Sweden, you only played in the summer, and it was more like fun with it rather than super serious,” she says.

She competed in her first tournament when she was 12, but it wasn’t until she was 14 that she had to decide between golf, soccer and figure skating. “My parents said, ‘You have to pick something,’” Lindblad recalls. “Golf was the easier choice; you don’t have to have access to anything but a golf course. You can practice whenever you want.” So, she made her decision and never looked back.

Growing up far from Sweden near Tampa in Riverview, Florida, Stone learned by watching her dad. Playing in the sandbox with her plastic clubs, for her there was no sport other than golf. She got her first real set of clubs at age 5, and by the age of ten, she was playing in tournaments and holding her own. “I was always bumped up in the divisions,” she shared. “So, I’d be 10 playing with 13- or 15-year-olds. I was always the younger one.”

Both graduate students have kept busy since arriving at LSU on advice from friends and family, having collected numerous accolades in their time in Baton Rouge, including 33 top 10 finishes for Lindblad and 17 for Stone.

Ahead of this year’s ANWA, both golfers are keeping their preparations the same as always but hoping for some changes in other ways—notably, regarding media coverage. “Just having tournaments on TV makes a big difference,” Lindblad notes.

The first two rounds of ANWA will be covered on Golf Channel, and the final round will be covered on NBC Sports. Both Lindblad and Stone recognize that a big reason most people don’t know about the sport is due to a lack of airtime and exposure. “I kind of just wish that women’s golf got more attention,” says Lindblad. “Not just college, but LPGA.”

And with the increased exposure of female athletes like Caitlin Clark, who is breaking records across gender lines, Stone knows having women in the limelight making history helps to create new opportunities for all women. “With more TV coverage,” Stone stresses they “can inspire and open doors for the next generation.”

With their time as collegiate athletes coming to an end, Lindblad and Stone are looking to the future. Stone plans to continue playing golf, hoping to ultimately make a career of it. Meanwhile, Lindblad has secured a spot on the Epson Tour with hopes to then qualify for the LPGA.

ANWA will take place April 3 through 6, followed by the SEC Championship happening April 12 through 16. To keep up with Lindblad, Stone and the rest of LSU women’s golf follow along on Instagram at @lsuwomensgolf.