The golf team begin its fall season this weekend at the Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the same tournament and course at which they opened last season.
Finishing sixth in conference last season the Wildcats head into fall play with the ultimate goal of being at the conference championship at the end of the spring season.
“These guys just want to become great, they want to play conference, they want to win conference,” Head Coach Tom Shaw said. “We’re gonna try to win the whole thing.”
The team has been preparing for the fall season for several weeks now, bringing together new faces including two freshmen and junior transfer GK Morrison. ACU returns several veterans including senior Ryan Beatty, who served as a key player for the Wildcats last season.
“I think this first event we will start off strong. I have a good feeling,” Morrison said. “We have a good solid five, and we’ve been working really hard these past two weeks. We all want to do good individually, but as a team our goal is the Southland Conference.”
Morrison and the rest of the team have full faith that their hard work will come to pay off as the season unfolds. Shaw said that though their competition in the Southland Conference is good, they are not unbeatable.
“I feel confident about this year. I feel like we have the right group of guys, and there’s a lot of potential ahead of us. I think the best is yet to come,” Beatty said.
The team takes off for Colorado Springs this weekend, the first of six out-of-state tournaments to be played this school year. Adjusting to a change in altitude, temperature and overall mountain golf is going to be a challenge that the Wildcats will hope to adapt to.
“Golf is unique. We don’t play on a hundred-yard field. We don’t play on a ten-foot goal. Every golf course is totally unique and different,” Shaw said.
Adding five new tournaments to this year’s schedule, the team will be exposed to different courses in different parts of the country, an experience that Shaw says is important to the growth and learning experience his players benefit from.
“I know our goal this year is to be as good as we can be,” Shaw said. “And the fact that we can’t yet go to post season this year doesn’t mean that we’re gonna rest on our laurels. We’re gonna try to win.”
Shaw expects this team, a team that is deeper and stronger than past years to focus on each tournament, each round, each hole, and not just the outcome of the future.