The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Driving in a new season

Golf team has high hopes for the fall

After a summer of rest, the Saint Joseph’s University men’s golf team is preparing to hit the course again. With their season beginning Sept. 9 at the Alex Lagowitz Memorial Invitational, senior captain Tyler Sokolis is excited for how the season will turn out.

“We’re feeling really good,” Sokolis said. “We have new energy and new freshmen that just came in.”

Freshmen Mike McKelvey and Wills Montgomery are slated to bring new talent to the team.

“They [freshmen] bring a lot of energy to the game,” senior captain Ross Pilliod said. “We all love the game and everyone wants to play in the tournaments.”

Out of 11 golfers, only three are upperclassmen, adding an element of youth to the team.

After an 11th place team finish at the Atlantic 10 Championships last spring, the Hawks hope to come back and have a strong season. With only one senior graduating last May, there is no need for the team to rebuild despite the large amount of upperclassmen.

Led by captains, Sokolis and Pilliod, the Hawks hope to win their first tournament of the season this week.

Young talent could be a factor with only one senior, Sokolis, on the squad. Sophomore Michael O’Brien led the team during last year’s A-10 championships as a freshman, claiming 29th place individually and has the potential to do so again.

He also led in scoring in six out of 12 matches throughout last season, and earned the title of A-10 Rookie of the Week four times throughout last year. In 2016, he claimed the individual title at the first tournament of the year.

“Mike [O’Brien] has a big future coming at St. Joe’s and possibly beyond that,” Sokolis remarked. “He has no problem getting focused.”

Three other A-10 Championship participants are returning from last year, including Sokolis, Pilliod, and sophomore Reed Winkler.

The key to success this season and at the championships will be preparation, according to Sokolis.

“Generally, we haven’t showed up very well at A-10’s in the past, so we’re going to try to prepare a little better,” he said.

Without a steady practice course, the team is not always able to practice consistently. Though their goal is to obtain a stable area to be able to practice every day.

“It’s unfortunate [the lack of practice space],” Pilliod said. “We have two courses we go to who treat us well, but not having a full range is not the best practice situation for a division one team.”

The collegiate golf season lasts from September until November and will resume in February, 2018.

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