Current Residence: Austin, Texas
Hometown: Riga, Latvia
Home Golf Course: Golf Club Viesturi, Riga, Latvia
College: Texas State University
- 2008, 2011, 2012 Latvian Amateur Champion
- 2008 and 2009 Latvian Junior Amateur Champion
- WGCA Honorable Mention All-American, CoSIDA All-American Second Team at Texas State University
- Turned professional in 2014, won first two events as a professional on the Suncoast Tour
At nine years of age, Puisite received a special Christmas present from her father – a set of golf clubs. Back then, she was disappointed with her gift because she had no interest in golf.
Looking back on it today, it was the best present she could have received. Her father had just taken up the game a few years prior, and he bought two sets of junior golf clubs for his two daughters with the goal of introducing them to the game.
It took a little bit of time for Puisite to gain interest, but once she did take up the game a couple of years later, she didn’t stop.
At age 12, she started playing in junior golf tournaments in Latvia. At age 13, she was competing internationally all over Europe, and qualified for the Latvian Junior National Team. By the time she graduated high school, she was the top amateur player in Latvia, having won the Latvian Amateur Championship in 2008 and the Latvian Junior Amateur Championship in 2008 and 2009.
She earned a full scholarship to Texas State University. College initially was a difficult adjustment for Puisite, living so far away from home for the first time.
Her younger sister, Mara, also an elite junior golfer, accepted a scholarship to Texas State the following year.
“That was the best thing that could have happened to me,” said Puisite. “My sister and I are so close, and when she came to the United States and Texas State, we had each other to rely on.”
Her golf game started to blossom. She gained confidence in her swing and the results showed. By her junior year, she decided she was going to give professional golf a shot after college.
“I decided to quit saying, ‘I might want to play golf for a living,’ and instead say that ‘I will play professional golf for a living,’” said Puisite. “I had always dreamed about playing on the LPGA Tour, but I never seemed to believe I could actually do it.”
She concluded her collegiate career in 2013 with four victories and 12-top 10 finishes, including three wins her senior year, earning First Team All-American honors. She competed in Cactus Tour and Suncoast Tour events following graduation to see how her game matched up with the professional circuit, and earned conditional status on the Symetra Tour in 2014 via 2013 LPGA Q-School.
She turned professional in early 2014 and won her first two events as a professional on the Suncoast Tour. Her confidence was building. When she heard about auditions for Big Break, it was her sister, Mara, who provided the support and the encouragement for her to apply.
“We rely on each other a lot both on and off the golf course,” said Puisite. “We are both sources of inspiration and comfort for each other.”
It is that family comfort and encouragement that she will take with her when she competes on Big Break Myrtle Beach.