Born on 21st June 1986 in western Victoria to Ann and Neville Keating, sheep and crop farmers, Stacey was introduced to golf at the age 12 through her grandmother Lorna. While farm life presents many challenges, for Stacey it provided an opportunity to practice her passion at home. Stacey, with the assistance of her parents, designed and built a 6 hole golf course, inclusive of a bunker and a full length driving range. Christened the ‘Keating Family Golf Academy’, many hours have been spent honing her skills with most pre-school mornings spent practicing in the paddock with the car lights on. To this day the ‘Keating Family Golf Course’ provides a competitive venue for all the whole family to enjoy.
Completely hooked on the game from day one Stacey quickly showed promise scoring her first hole-in-one at 12. She went on to win the Club Championship at Lismore Golf Club for 5 consecutive years and reduced her handicap to 8. School holiday were often spent staying with nana Lorna at Lismore where Stacey practiced for hours not hitting balls, as Lismore Golf Club did not have a range, but playing hole after hole. In fact one school holiday for 5 days straight Stacey played a minimum of 36 holes, one of those days she played 81 holes! For a young mind the realization and proof that practice brings results only motivated Stacey to work even harder.
Today Stacey’s work ethic is legendary and unsurpassed amongst her peers.
In 2004 Stacey completed her VCE at Trinity College in Colac. With the golf bug well and truly caught but at the age of eighteen having still never received a golf lesson, with the support of her parents, Stacey moved to Melbourne. The move to Melbourne not only allowed her to pursue the expertise needed to take her game to the next level but also allowed Stacey to commenced a Bachelor of Applied Science in Sport Science (golf specific) at the University of Victoria. Stacey proudly completed her degree in 2008.
It was soon after her move to the ‘big smoke’ that Stacey was introduced to Steve Giuliano, the teaching professional at Sanctuary Lakes Golf Club. This meeting would prove to life changing for Stacey as Steve provided exactly what this promising player needed, direction and expertise for the long term development of her game. Four years down the track this teacher-player partnership is considered to be one of the most successful in Australian golf. Under Steve’s guidance Stacey proceeded to work diligently on all aspects of her game and in just one year went from a handicap of seven to scratch. In 2006 Stacey entered and won her first nationally ranked tournament, the Victorian Amateur Championship. This win began a snowball effect which has seenStacey amassed an impressive amateur record to say the least. These successes include victory in the Queensland Strokeplay Championship as well as a runner-up in the Australian Amateur Championship. The past four years has also seen Stacey move quickly up the National Amateur Rankings where she is currently ranked No. 2 in Australia.
Whilst her national career is impressive, undoubtedly the most impressive aspect of Stacey’s career and the one that supports her decision to pursue a professional career is her ability to perform internationally, paramount to a successful professional career.
Travelling to Europe in 2007 Stacey competed in six tournaments and won two of them, the Irish Stroke Play (Ireland) and the Pleasington Putter Tournament (England). The following year Stacey travelled to USA and Canada, and won one of the biggest international amateur events in the world, the Canadian Amateur. So highly regarded is this event that Stacey received an exemption into the Canadian Open which is a Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) sanctioned event. The LPGA is the number one professional tour in the world. As Stacey looks towards a professional career this golfing experience has proven to be extremely timely as it gave Stacy a unique opportunity to not only live the life of a professional golfer for a week but more importantly has allowed Stacey to bench mark her game against the very best golfers in the world.
Stacey’s commitment, passion, work ethic and results have not gone unnoticed. Stacey was recently selected to join the Australian Institute of Sport where she will receive the very best guidance available in all areas of long term athlete development to ensure that she is given the very best opportunity to fulfill her potential.