Kory Thompson knows all about the recent success of the Augusta State men's golf program.
Thompson, who was announced as the school's fifth women's golf coach Thursday, is hoping to take her new team to the next level. While the men's team is coming off back-to-back NCAA Division I national championships, the Lady Jaguars are looking to build off the program's second postseason appearance in May.
"I like pressure," Thompson said. "If you're an athlete, you thrive on pressure. So I'm excited. I want these girls to do well."
The former Charleston Southern coach was tabbed to replace Kevin McPherson, who was named Augusta State men's golf coach in July.
Thompson served the past two seasons as head coach of the Lady Buccaneers, leading her squad to the Big South Championship her first season. Last year was a rebuilding year, but she said her players each improved their stroke averages by three shots.
"What she's done the past couple of seasons at Charleston Southern doesn't necessarily reflect on how good a coach she is," McPherson said. "The resources they have there vs. the resources we have here are a night and day difference. We've got the facilities for recruiting. We've got the support here for golf."
The 29-year-old Thompson, who grew up in Easley, S.C., before her family moved to Columbia during her sophomore year of high school, is part of a great golf family.
Along with her sister, Kacy, and teammate Kristy McPherson, Kevin's sister, Thompson was part of South Carolina's 2002 Southeastern Conference championship squad. Her brother, Kyle, has won once this year on the Nationwide Tour and is on track to receive his 2012 PGA Tour card. And she's not bad herself.
Thompson shot 1-under to win the Charleston Ladies Amateur by 23 shots in May. She now inherits an Augusta State squad that returns all five starters and two other letterwinners off last season's squad that advanced to the NCAA Division I East Regional.
Thompson will begin recruiting immediately for the 2012-13 season. She will also start holding team practice next week.