The men’s golf team looks to swing back from winter break and start their 2016 spring season. The last tournament the Blue and White competed in was the Mountaineer Intercollegiate, finishing 12th out of 14 teams last October. In the fall, the Pirates recorded two top-five finishes. The cold weather rolled in and the Pirates waited for the spring season.
Now, it’s here.
The new golf lab in the Richie Regan Recreation Center has been put to good use since being unveiled last December. The facility was built through the donations of the Torcivia Family Foundation. The players took advantage of the hitting stalls and a Trackman portable simulator.
“The new golf room is helping a lot,” senior Ryan Snouffer said. “Being able to use that and practice stuff that you usually can’t practice in the winter when you’re on the east coast (has helped).”
Snouffer recorded two top-20 finishes in the fall compared to four last spring. Junior Lloyd Jefferson Go is coming off the best season of his career after totaling three top-10 finishes in three events with a career low 71.80 stroke average.
“We set up drills each day that we usually accomplish and we have a score,” Go said. “The next week, we try to beat the drill we just did.”
Players were able to work on any skill they wanted with the luxury of being indoors. Each player had their own skills they wanted to work on, whether it be putting or driving distance with some tips from the coaches.
“They really have taken it upon themselves to prepare. I’ve guided them by giving them my thoughts on what would work best,” head coach Clay White said. “They really tailor their work on their own with a little guidance from me, but it’s really the players working hard on their own.”
Last spring, the team’s lowest finish at an event was seventh out of five tournaments played while recording three top-five finishes.
White doesn’t expect the same finishes as last year – nor does he expect anything at all.
“In golf, you can never have expectations. Once you start having expectations, things never go well. I think that’s true in all sports,” White said.
The first tournament the Pirates will play in is the Carlton Oaks WIU invitational in Santee, California. This will be the first time Seton Hall has played in this event. The team will have a few days before it starts to prepare.
Following the Carlton Oaks tourney, the Pirates will stay out west to compete in the Loyola Invitational starting Feb. 29. The team will have about three weeks until its next event when the Kingsmill Intercollegiate starts March, 19.
In April, the Blue and White will participate in three events starting with the Redhawk Invitational followed by the Princeton Invitational and ending with the Rutherford Intercollegiate. The Big East Championship will be played May 5 and May 6 in Okatie, South Carolina.
“They all have strengths and weaknesses,” White said. “Turning our weaknesses into strengths is obviously what we’ve been trying to do this whole winter.”
The first and second rounds of the Carlton Oaks WIU Invitational will begin on Feb. 15, and the third round will be played the next day.
Javon Glenn can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @javong25