After a strong finish to the spring season last year, the
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point women’s golf team looked to be on the
right track for the start of the 2012 fall season.
became skewed this summer when the team found out that junior Mary Welch, a
National Golf Coaches Association All-American, had transferred to a Division I
college, Ball State.
the loss of one of the school’s best golfers in its history, the team has
stayed together and given great effort during the season.
so far has been tough with Mary Welch transferring and leaving us with only
four girls,” said head coach Melissa Martin. “The girls are doing great,
though, as a team of four.”
team gets five players to play in each tournament, with the top four members of
each team contributing to the score.
four players, everyone has to be at the top of their game every tournament. “It
does put us at a disadvantage not having a fifth player to use a score from,”
of the fall squad are seniors Olivia Schiefelbein and Kayla Johnson, junior
McKenna Prestigiacomo, and freshman Natalie Halverson.
“They are practicing
hard, and we have definitely seen improvement in scores from when we first
started this fall,” Martin said.
The team has
gotten more competitive as the season continued. This trend was on display in
the last two tournaments of the fall season, the UWSP Mad Dawg Invite and the
Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship.
team’s first three tournaments, they averaged a team total of 380 strokes per
day. In the final two events the Pointers participated in, they tallied an average
uninitiated may look at a difference of six strokes as a miniscule improvement,
but in golf six strokes is quite the margin.
to the WIAC final this season. The difference between first place University of
Wisconsin- Stout and third place University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire was only
spot for Stevens Point this season has been their new leader on the course,
had the lowest score for the Pointers in each event and capped the season with
a fifth place finish at the WIAC Championship.
fall season now in the books, the team has to look forward to the spring
season, which they will play without senior Kayla Johnson, who graduates at the
end of this semester.
Now with two
spots open on the roster, Coach Martin knows that she has plenty of work ahead
of her, but she is excited about the new talent she has been looking at.
“I have been
meeting with lots of new recruits for next year, so I’m really excited about
the new additions we will have to the team,” said Martin.
The Pointers begin the spring
season by going south for a tournament, Martin explained, and finish the season
with three tournaments in April and May.