UNC Greensboro announced Monday that Ashley Leonard has been named women’s golf head coach. Leonard has spent the past eight years with the Barton College men’s and women’s golf programs, including the last six as head coach for both teams. She also held the title of assistant athletic director since 2017.
“We are excited to announce North Carolina native Ashley Leonard as our women’s golf head coach,” said Director of Athletics Kim Record. “Her Barton teams have been recognized for their sportsmanship, academic success, and competitiveness, and she brings a wealth of knowledge to our program.”
“I am truly honored to be the next women’s golf head coach at UNCG,” Leonard said. “I would like to thank Kim Record, Tim George, and Chancellor Gilliam for this incredible opportunity. I am excited to get to campus and go to work with our young ladies. They all seem very eager and ready to work. I am looking forward to the season and watching our young ladies improve everyday. I would also like to say thank you to Barton College and Athletic Director Todd Wilkinson for all of his support and leadership.”
Leading Barton to success
During her time at Barton, Leonard guided the golf programs to nine tournament victories and 10 runner-up finishes. On the men’s side, Leonard led the team to fourth or better in the league championship four times, including three-straight runner-up finishes between 2017-19. She was named the 2018 Conference Carolinas Coach of the Year.
In total, Leonard led 11 players to all-conference honors along with two players selected as Conference Carolinas Player of the Year and one Conference Carolinas Freshman of the Year selection. Additionally, three men’s players qualified for NCAA Regionals during her time as Barton’s head coach.
Academically, Leonard had 10 players named to the Academic All-American team. The men’s team also collected the All-American Scholars team award four times (2013, 2016, 2017, 2018). The women’s team, meanwhile, was recognized by Conference Carolinas with the Spring Team Sportsmanship Award twice.
In her role as assistant athletic director, Leonard assisted with day-to-day operations of the department while being tasked with securing sponsors for the Bulldog Club and reviewing financial reports.
A decorated high school career
A native of North Carolina, Leonard won three-straight individual state championships between 1996-98 and finished runner-up in 1999 while at Northern Nash High School.
Leonard was a three-time All-Big East performer and was the league’s Golfer of the Year in 1999 and 2000. She was the 1998 North and South Junior Champion, and played in the 1999 USGA Junior Girls Championship and the 2000 USGA Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship.
She was Northern Nash’s 2000 Female Athlete of the Year, when she won the Triple Crown Award for Academics, Athletics, and Character. She was also an AJGA Polo Junior Honorable Mention All-American in 1999.
Leonard received her BS in business administration from East Carolina in 2004.
Photography by Carlos Morales, UNCG Athletics