Justin Chapman | Echo
Taylor's men's and women's golf teams followed through last weekend to attain victories in the Grant County Cup. The tournament was the first match of the season for both teams.
Sophomore Maddie Thomas, the 2017 Crossroads League Newcomer of the Year, showed off her talents. She achieved a remarkable victory of 6 and 5 over Indiana Wesleyan's Carley LaPlant. This means that she was up six holes with five left, ending the match early with no chance of LaPlant coming back.
"I think it's good, especially going into this season, to put ourselves in very high pressure situations," Thomas said. "Especially with how we played last year, and how we made it to (the) conference (tournament), and how we were down by nine strokes going into day two, and how we had to come back and we had to play well that day. So I think it's good coming into this year to continue to exceed our limits and push ourselves."
The Grant County Cup on Friday consisted of match play, which means the teams golf in pairs. The best score out of the two will count, taking some of the pressure off since the golfer does not just rely on themselves.
While the Trojans made some errors, the team did not have much rust to shake off since they were training all summer to prepare for this season.
"Not all of them hit clutch shots; we made mistakes," head coach Cam Andry said. "We didn't necessarily handle (pressure situations) the best all the time, but (the players) get an opportunity to then look at it and examine, 'Alright, why did I play well the first 14 holes, and then whenever I figured out that we had to have my match, I didn't play well. What is it about the way I approach it that maybe didn't allow me to be successful?' That's really the point."
The men's and women's golf season is both in the fall and spring. Every event they play in has implications towards their ranking and postseason future. However, since this was a match play event, there was no way to report scores.
Every event after this past one will count towards their ranking and postseason fate.
On the men's side, senior Mitch Lamping attained an impressive victory by the score of 5 and 3 against Indiana Wesleyan's Ryan Cahill. Senior Trey Turner added impactful play by contributing a 1-up win. He also harped on the importance of this tournament.
"It was very good for the freshmen just to be able to get out there," Turner said. "It wasn't a lot like a tournament, but it had somewhat of a tournament feel to it. I think it was good for them to be able to experience that one time before we actually go play."
The women's team will play next at the Indiana Wesleyan Invitational on Sept. 1. The men's team will play Sept. 11 at the Wolfpack Invitational.
"Photograph provided by Cam Andry"