Woman Kicker Accounts for First

From Associated Press

Kicker Katie Hnida became the first woman to account for scoring in a Division I-A football game Saturday night, kicking two extra points in New Mexico’s 72-8 win over Texas State San Marcos.

DonTrell Moore ran for four touchdowns and Casey Kelly threw for three long before Hnida made history.

Hnida, a 5-foot-10, 140-pound senior, entered the game with 5:05 left in the fourth quarter after New Mexico scored on a 20-yard touchdown pass from third-string quarterback Tali Ena to Hank Baskett for a 64-8 lead.

Hnida, her long blond hair protruding from the back of her helmet, split the uprights with her kick, then waved her hands in the air.


Hnida also made a PAT with a low kick after the Lobos’ final touchdown with 1:21 left.

Hnida made history last December by becoming the first woman to participate in a Division I-A game when she entered the Las Vegas Bowl against UCLA to attempt an extra point after the Lobos’ first touchdown with 8:20 left in the first quarter. The kick was blocked.

Hnida was on the University of Colorado roster in 1999 as a walk-on, and became the second woman to suit up for a Division I-A game when the Buffaloes played Kansas early in the season. Kathy Klop suited up for Louisville in 1995.

On Aug. 30, 2001, Ashley Martin became the first woman to participate and account for scoring in a Division I-AA game, making three extra points in as many attempts for Jacksonville State.


In October of 1998, a jury in Greensboro, N.C. awarded Heather Sue Mercer, a woman kicker, $2 million in punitive damages, ruling Duke cut her from the team in 1994 solely because of her gender. By the time Hnida made her historic kick Saturday, only a fraction of the kickoff-time crowd of 35,331 remained.

New Mexico scored on all six of its first half possessions, with Moore scoring three touchdowns in the first quarter on runs of 16, 2 and 14 yards. Kelly took over in the second quarter with touchdown passes of 14, 32 and 6 yards.

So efficient was the Lobo offense against the Division 1-AA Bobcats that New Mexico punted only once, with eight minutes left in the game.