Golfers compete for Hawaii

The men’s golf team will look to capitalize on its hard work as it opens spring play Wednesday at the UH Hilo Intercollegiate event in Waikoloa, Hawaii, the team’s coach said.

Five out of the eight golfers on the team travel to each event, and coach Bill Montigel said success will hinge on a total team effort this year. All five golfers will have to play their best golf at the same time, Montigel said.

Junior golfer, James Sacheck, said the qualifier determining which five will represent TCU in Hawaii is sometimes more competitive that the event itself.

This competitive nature has been evident in the Horned Frogs’ hard work throughout the season, and it started with their captain, Franklin Corpening, Montigel said.

Corpening, a senior, is a good leader for some of the younger guys on the team and his leadership is shown through his hard work, Montigel said.

Corpening likes his role as captain, and he said he takes a lot of responsibility on himself to keep morale up, as well as acting as a source of encouragement for all players on the team.

He said his three years of experience have helped a lot, especially during tough times on the course. He said that he finds it easier to bounce back from a few bad shots now as a senior, more so than when he was a freshman.

Montigel said he likes where his team is both mentally and physically, and he said if the players can keep this up, they have a good shot at doing well this year.

“We’ve worked out really hard in the mornings with our workout programs, and we have had a lot more structured practices,” Montigel said. “I think the kids’ attitude is awesome, and if they can keep the same attitude and keep working hard, we will have a real successful year.”

Individually, Sacheck has worked extremely hard, and shown improvement this year, Montigel said.

Sacheck attributed his better play to more practice driving the ball off the tee, his short game, a better mental approach and trying to keep risky shots at a minimum.

Montigel said he expects hard work from his players on and off the course. At the start of every school year, the team meets and discusses its goals for the upcoming season.

In addition to conference and NCAA Championship aspiration, Montigel asks his team to try to maintain a 3.0 GPA.

On the course, Montigel wants each player to do the best he can and take it one shot at a time.

“If a guy shoots a 64, I try not to get too excited and do cartwheels, but if he shoots an 80, I am not going to yell at him either,” Montigel said.

Montigel and the Horned Frogs have won five conference championships in the last seven years.