Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Fall Season Recap

With the close of CordeValle, the fall season for Stanford Men’s Golf has come to an end.  A lot has happened in just a few short months.  The team came out with a bang, winning the first event of the season at the Southwestern Intercollegiate hosted by USC.  There was no rest for the weary as we traveled straight to Chicago from LA to compete in the Fighting Illinois Invitational where the Card finished 4th.  

After two short weeks at home, a chance for the boys to get back into school, we whisked off to Hogan’s Alley at Colonial CC in Fort Worth, Texas to play the inaugural Nike Golf Collegiate Invitational.  While in Fort Worth, the competing teams visited the Oven, Nike’s innovative research and fitting center, where we received a first-class tour and were able to test Nike’s newest equipment.  After a strong final day the Card waited for Oregon to finish.  Oregon would go on to make a few birdies on the final holes to secure the win.  Even with a second place finish, the team left Fort Worth feeling confident.  

The team would have a week at home before traveling to the fourth event of the fall, The US Collegiate Championship in Alpharetta, Georgia, just outside Atlanta.  It wasn’t the team’s best week and resulted in our only finish outside the top five.  The fifth and final event of the fall, the Gifford Collegiate hosted by UCLA, took place at CordeValle just 40 minutes from campus.  The team bounced back nicely finishing third in the event and had the best round of the day in the final round. 

In total, we had a strong fall season finishing in the top five in four of five events.  Some highlights of the season include:
  • Our senior, Patrick Grimes, was elected team Captain.  Patrick will play an important role in leading the team throughout the year
  • Maverick McNealy had his first collegiate win at the Southwestern Intercollegiate, firing a 65 in the final round to win by 5 strokes.  Maverick followed up his win by winning again the following week in Chicago.  Maverick shared medalist honors with Dylan Meyer from Illinois
  • Stanford Golf alums, Tiger Woods and Notah Begay, visited campus for Notah Begay’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony.  Both Tiger and Notah spent several hours with the team each day over a long weekend sharing their vast knowledge of golf
  • The conclusion of the Tiger and Notah weekend was marked by sophomore Viraat Badwhar who shot 59 at Stanford Golf Course, setting a new course record, breaking his own previous course record of 61 in the process.  Viraat, “V,” was eight under par through 11 holes and was able to calmly two-putt from 20 feet on 18 for his record round
  • David Boote finished in the top 10 in two of three events and finished fourth in the College All-America Classic - a tournament he was invited to as a result of his All-American honorable mention last season
  • The team earned valuable experience as each player, including all three freshmen, played in at least one tournament this fall.  The freshmen finishes were capped off by Franklin Huang’s 66 in the final round of CordeValle, earning him his first collegiate top 10

Overall there are many positive things to take from this fall.  There are also several exciting new opportunities for improvement, which we will look to tackle in the offseason.  The team is looking forward to some quality time on campus, both in the classroom and on the course over the next couple of months before picking things up again in January.  The Race to Hawaii, the team’s next qualifying tournament, is only two short months away!