LSU tandem Garrett Runion, Alexis Rather earn distinction with selection to Team USA’s coaching staff for Arnold Palmer Cup

Team USA has named LSU head coach Garrett Runion and assistant Alex Rather to its coaching staff for the 2024 Arnold Palmer Cup.

Runion, in his sixth season with the Tigers, was selected co-head coach along with Matt Thurmond of Arizona State, and Rather an assistant to the U.S. team.

The Ryder Cup-style event which takes in Ireland on July 5-7 and will feature men’s and women’s collegiate golfers from the U.S. facing off against international competition.

“I am extremely humbled and honored to be named the co-head coach of the Arnold Palmer Cup for the American team,” Runion said. “I was very blessed and fortunate to grow up in Orlando and be a member at Bay Hill Country Club and get to know Mr. Palmer. So ever since I got into coaching, I wanted to be a part of it in some way, shape or form. I am very excited about this. I look forward to coaching in Ireland and hopefully we have some of our own LSU players play on both sides.

“I’m extremely excited for Alexis,” Runion said. “I know this was a big thing for her as well. It will be the first time two coaches from the same school coach together in the same year. We are extremely excited and looking forward to it.”

Rather, a former assistant for eight years under former LSU coach Karen Bahnsen, is in her 14th year at LSU and has paired with Runion for 12 college wins that was highlighted by the 2022 SEC Women’s Championship.

“It truly is an incredible honor to be selected as an assistant coach for Team USA in the 2024 Arnold Palmer Cup,” Rather said. “Mr. Palmer has done so much to grow the game of golf and to be a small part of this incredible event which honors his legacy is very humbling.”

Runion was named SEC Coach of the Year in 2023 for the second straight year after leading LSU to four wins, a semifinal spot in the SEC Match Play and a rallying finish in the final eight holes at the NCAA Regional to advance to the third straight championship round.

LSU finished ranked No. 3 in the final 2022-23 WGCA Mizuno Coaches Poll. The Tigers posted one of the lowest averages in school history at 286.65 for 34 rounds. LSU was ranked No. 1 preseason at the start of the 2023-24 season by Golfweek magazine.

Rather, a former standout at LSU, was recognized for her work efforts and abilities at the conclusion of the ’23 season and was named the national Assistant Coach of the Year by the Women’s Golf Coaches Association. Since she joined the staff in the fall of 2010, LSU has made 10 NCAA Tournament team appearances and sent two individuals in the other seasons.

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