Freshmen lead Mountain Lions at first tournament

Sept. 15, 2014

Brandon Applehans
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In just their second season as a program, expectations remain high for the women’s golf team. And the freshmen are leading the charge.

The team teed off their first event of the year at the Wolf Pack Invitational in Pueblo, Co. UCCS fi nished eighth of 15 teams. Individually, freshman Andrea Ballou tied for ninth, freshman Alex Darwin finished tenth and junior Jamie Zook finished tied for twenty-ninth.

Shooting 17 over par, Ballou totaled the second best score in program history.

“I don’t like setting specific goals,” said Zook. “I want to live up to my own potential. I want to play the best I can.”

When recruiting freshmen, head coach Sadie Farnsworth looks primarily for young athletes that can break through the freshman jitters. Those types of recruits can come in and start helping the program immediately.

“I like to look at the junior tours, especially the Rocky Mountain tour,” said Farnsworth. “They play at the distances we play at in college. So I know the kid is going to be ready.”

The three freshman UCCS signed were all a part of the Rocky Mountain Junior Tour.

Going into her second season, Farnsworth wants to see better management of nerves.

“For tournaments, getting through the first tee-box is crucial because that’s where all the nerves hit,” said Farnsworth. “After that, it’s one shot at a time. I don’t want them adding their scores. Just hit it and you walk.”

Over the summer, the team emphasized short game practice and swing adjustments.

“This summer I spent a lot of time making a few changes to my swing,” said sophomore Amanda Crites. “I wanted to make it more reliable. I also spent some time in the gym.”

Mentality in their sport can have a huge impact, according to Farnsworth.

“Practice mode and competition mode are completely different,” said Farnsworth. “In practice mode they should be working on their weaknesses. If you know you can hit the ball with any club in your bag, you’re going to be a lot more confi dent walking down to your second shot.”

“Golf is mental,” added Crites. “For me, it’s all about staying positive and focusing on the next shot.”

The Mountain Lions next take the course at the Colorado Christian Invitational Sept. 15-16.