By Megan Toninato
The CSB golf team has been rolling through their fall season, but the best is yet to come.
This past weekend, the team competed at the College City Challenge hosted by Carleton College. Here, they faced off against the toughest MIAC golfers. On Saturday, CSB found themselves in sixth place out of 12.
But when championship Sunday came, they were ready.
The team shot their way up two spots, ending with a team finish of fourth place. Leading the way for CSB was junior Natalie Amundson. On Saturday, she shot an 80 and on Sunday she cut three strokes off her previous score, finishing with a 77 which was good enough for 8th individually.
“My teammates have really stepped up and lowered their individual scores and that then translates to our better team scores to bring us into the running for winning tournaments,” Amundson said.
“Finishing in the top 10 individually really helps reinforce the hard work that has been put in, but it also helps motivate myself further to keep working toward our MIAC tournament.”
This was not the first time CSB had found themselves fighting in the middle of the pack. The weekend before at the DIII Classic, CSB also finished fourth of 16 teams. At this tournament, senior Madeline Pagel shot a career low with a score of 77, finishing tied for ninth individually.
“I was very excited about my recent career low,” Pagel said. “I feel that our team’s depth in talent has driven all of us to work harder at practice and stimulate a competitive environment. Many of my teammates have also achieved personal goals in practice and I’m confident we can translate that to our tournaments.”
Like any other sports team, the CSB golf team has seen a road of hills and valleys throughout the fall. Their season started with a pretty average finish in their own tournament, placing sixth of 13 teams. But, as the team got first week nerves behind them, people started turning their heads, keeping an eye out for the St. Benedict golf team.
“One of our biggest challenges this year as it is most years is time,” Head Coach Daryl Schomer said. “Golf is such a high maintenance game that requires a lot of practice time just to keep your game status quo much less improve.” Schomer discussed what it is like to be a DIII golfer.
“I’d say on average my players get in six to eight hours per week,” Schomer said. “When you consider playing just one round of 18 holes takes four hours that doesn’t leave a lot of time left over to work on chipping, putting or long game.”
With the team now in a steady groove of their game, CSB golf has their sights set on the big MIAC tournament. This is three-day tournament against the most skilled competition in the conference. These rounds will be played at Pebble Creek Golf Club in Becker, MN. Both the players and Schomer believe the course sets up in their favor.
“Pebble Creek is a great venue with large fairways and large greens. Most of our preparation going forward will be on iron play and putting,” Schomer said.
“Our team has a lot of length off the tee which will be advantageous at this course,” Pagel said.
The team has their eyes set on the top three teams in the MIAC, and they are ready to make a statement. Amundson was extremely close to being crowned MIAC champion placing 2nd individually in 2015. Schomer is confident in his team.
“I have a team full of players all capable of going low. If we prepare properly, relax and enjoy the experience good scores will follow,” Schomer said.
The MIAC Championship takes place Oct. 7-9 at Pebble Creek Golf Course.