Bell talks golf, Winona State and future


Photo of the Winona State Women’s golf team golfer Alexa Bell from the Winona State University’s athletics website.

RJ Beal-Lancaster, features reporter

Lexi Bell spent this last weekend teeing off with some of the top female competitive golfers in the NCAA Division II women’s golf in Springfield, Mo., to win the Central Region Preview.

Bell is a third-year student at Winona State University and has golfed on the women’s team for the last three years.

Bell said her golf career started far before Winona State, beginning in 7th grade.

“So, I started when I was 12, my father had brought my sisters and I out with him to golf,” “Bell said.

Bell’s father liked to golf for fun and wanted to share the sport with his daughters –his pastime ended up being his daughter’s passion.

“My dad had been watching me golf and he noticed that I had a natural swing,” Bell said. “He brought me out a few more times before he asked me if I wanted to go out for the girl’s golf team, sure enough I joined and ever since then it has been a love affair.”

Bell said her siblings don’t love to play, but enjoy the sport, nonetheless. “They don’t play golf, but they love to drive the golf cart,” Bell said.

Bell’s career blossomed once she began golfing at Wahpton High School.

“By the end of my sophomore year of high school, I finished somewhere in the top 15 for my conference, and the end of my senior year I finished in the top 10 of the entire state of North Dakota,” Bell said.

Bell as playing golf whenever she could, even going out on weekends while playing softball in the spring. Her father would take her to competitions whenever she was able to compete.

Bell talked about her experience competing during high school.

“In high school, for practice, we were in charge of improving our game,” Bell said. “Which usually consisted of going to the range or maybe going to going around the course. My Dad saw that I was not getting enough practice in so he would bring me out. On the weekends he would bring me to the [Twin] cities to compete in different local competitions.”

This meant Bell was competing in individual golf tournaments as well as being part of her school’s golf and softball team.

Her devotion to the sport fostered her natural talent, which did not go unnoticed. By her fourth year of high school, Jeff Straight, director of Warrior golf, invited her to continue her career in Winona.

Bell said competition in college brings changes in comparison to high school.

“Competing at the college level definitely was different,” Bell said. “It’s harder, we are competing with girls around the country – many of which can play year-round.”

Bell expanded on her training for a college level competition.

“We have an indoor facility where we can practice our swings and a virtual course where we can practice our ball placement.”

The virtual course is a computer system where the golfers hit a ball onto a course which is projected onto a tarp and the computer does the rest.

“On top of practicing our swings, we do full body workouts to make sure we are staying in shape and get stronger swings,” Bell said.

Keith Green, a student who asked to remain anonymous, spoke to Bell’s work ethic as a student athlete.
“Lexi definitely works hard, she is busy with a lot with classes and golf, but she’s passionate about both and that really shows in the end,” Green said.