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Longtime Michigan State women's golf coach Mary Fossum dies at 93

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Mary Fossum, the first coach of the Michigan State women’s golf program and 6-time Big Ten Conference champion, has died at the age of 93.

Fossum coached the Spartans from 1973 until her retirement in 1997. In between, MSU won six Big Ten titles – five straight between 1974-78 and again in 1982 – and played in the national championships eight times.

“We have lost one of the Spartan greats. Mary Fossum was our coach, a mentor, a mom, a friend and a pioneer,” said MSU women’s golf head coach Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll in a press release. “Mary helped pave the way for so many women to have experiences and opportunities in golf. She fought hard when Title IX came into effect in the early 1970s so women could be student-athletes in college.”

MSU played in six consecutive Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women national championships (1973-78) and reached the NCAA championships in 1982 and 1984.

Fossum was inducted into the Golf Coaches Hall of Fame in 1988 and the MSU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2003. She was also inducted into the Wisconsin Golf Hall of Fame in 1990, only the fifth woman to achieve that honor.

Mary Fossum, MSU women’s golf coach from 1973-1997, died Sunday at 93 years old.

In 1999, MSU’s annual fall tournament was renamed the Mary Fossum Invitational. And in 2007, the Big Ten named its award for the women’s golfer with the lowest stroke-average to par in a season the Mary Fossum Award.

Fossum’s husband, Bruce, coached the Spartan men for 25 seasons before his retirement in 1989. He died in March 2014 at 86.

“Everything our programs have been able to accomplish goes back to the foundation of excellence her and Bruce established while coaching as husband and wife. To this day, our men’s and women’s program operate as one big family – a testament to what they created,” said MSU men’s golf coach Casey Lubahn.

original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2020/12/29/michigan-state-womens-golf-coach-mary-fossum-obituary/

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