Japan's Nasa Hataoka is quickly rising up the Rolex Rankings, and she now looks for a major title at the 2023 US Women's Open.
The 24-year-old already has multiple wins as she is a contender at Pebble Beach.
For some golf fans, they may not be familiar with the name Nasa -- even those fans who have an awareness of or affinity for Japanese culture. And that's for good reason.
How did Nasa Hataoka get her name?
Nasa Hataoka's first name isn't a Japanese name. It's an English name, sort of.
Hataoka's mom named Nasa after NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. That's right, Nasa is named after the U.S. space agency.
As revealed on Golf Channel's broadcast of the 2029 Kia Classic, Nasa's mom wanted to name her that to inspire her to chase the stars and go after her dreams. Now that Hataoka has planted a flag firmly in the ground on the way to the summit of women's professional golf, it seems like the name is more than fitting.