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A Good Season for Golf

Larry Robinson, Sports Editor

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The Kentucky Wesleyan Panther’s golf team is divided into men’s and women’s Teams. The men’s is made up of nine individuals while the women’s consist of five. The golf team is one of the smallest athletic programs we have in terms of numbers per sport. Summer Newsome is the strongest player we have on the woman’s team, and we rely on her heavily to place high; however, our low numbers hurt us especially in team scoring.

The men and woman’s golf teams have played three tournaments this year, and the men’s team placed second overall at the annual Yellow Jacket Invitational. One of the men’s team leaders Shea Sharkey placed second as an individual overall at this invitational that consisted of 7 teams and 50 individuals. Sharkey’s finish is a great accolade to have for a Kentucky Wesleyan golfer.

At the first tournament of the year the Midwest Regional, our team placed last out of 34 teams in a two round tournament. You could say it was nerves or as Shea put it, everyone had a case of the yipps, which was described to me as when the brain forgets everything it was taught and tries to relearn how to golf while playing golf.

The following Midwest regional our team placed 17 out of 18 teams which shows some improvement. Shea said, “The golfing as a team was there; however, the confidence wasn’t.” Many points the team should have had got lost on the greens. Many pars turned into double bogeys, and those killed the overall points that the team should have scored.

The top scorers for the men’s team are Shea Sharker and Patrick Schirmer. Shea placed so well in the tournaments this year that it is safe to say that he is the team’s best player going into his sophomore season. I wondered if the good golfers received scholarships, and Shea informed me that some players do receive scholarships for their efforts. There are some partial and close to full scholarships for golf.

The golf teams at Kentucky Wesleyan do have to face some adversity, however, since Kentucky Wesleyan doesn’t have a golf practice field. The team practices at the Pearl Club, which offers greens and fairways for practice. The bad weather and lack of school awareness for the sport are other mitigating factors. I asked various individuals on campus whether or not we had a golf team, and nearly 70 percent of the people I asked had no idea if we did or not. As a school, we should support every sports team, whether if that’s going to tournaments, games, or just saying good luck to players when we see them in the hallways.

I’m not that informed about the golf scoring system, but after talking to Shea, it’s a lot clearer. Each hole has a set number of strokes that it should take to get into the hole. If it takes a player that number of hits to sink the ball in the hole, that golfer pars. If a golfer takes fewer strokes to get it there, then the golfer birdies or eagles, which is very rare. If somehow it takes a golfer more than the set number of strokes, the golfer can bogey or double bogey. If a golfer hits the water, it is automatically a double bogey at the end of the round. Your accumulated score is based off the leader, so if a golfer is up four strokes from par but two strokes behind the leader, then the golfer is only two strokes behind.

All in all I found all the information that Shea shared with me very informative and I wish the lady and Men’s golf team luck with the rest of their season.

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A Good Season for Golf