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Golf swings for MAC title

By Justin Maskulinski
On April 29, 2014

The Miami University men's golf team is competing in the Mid-American Conference Championship beginning Thursday.

The 'Hawks travel to Carmel, Indiana to compete Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Senior Mark MacDonald said he hopes to take advantage of what he called the last guaranteed tournament of the year.

"It's kind of a bittersweet tournament," MacDonald said. "Obviously if we win it we get a spot in the NCAA Regionals. It's my last guaranteed tournament of my college career, so honestly I want to embrace it and enjoy it as much as I can and try to play my best golf. I'm looking forward to it."

The tournament is at the Prairie View Golf Club, which MacDonald said he is not familiar with. Head coach Zac Zedrick said the RedHawks have been using area golf courses to practice in similar conditions.

"We're giving our guys some opportunities for some reps on some good golf courses that are going to be similar to what we're going to see this weekend," Zedrick said. "We've been able to do that and that's really all we gotta do. It's not really complicated, we've just got to get it in the hole a little quicker and play with the kind of confidence that they've got to feel like they've earned."

Zedrick said he thinks the extra preparation will allow the 'Hawks to enter the tournament ready to go.

"I think we're going to be really well prepared," Zedrick said. "What I do know about [Prairie View] is that if you go out and see it once and you're paying attention, you're going to have a pretty good idea of what you need to do around there."

Many of the MAC schools are not familiar with Prairie View, and Zedrick said he thinks this should open up the playing field.

"No one in the league really has an idea about what this golf course is about," Zedrick said. "I think that will make it a little more open as far as who's got a chance to compete and win."

The past two tournaments for the 'Hawks have been learning experiences for the Red and White, and MacDonald said the team can take what they have learned into this weekend.

"We've played a couple of difficult golf courses in the past few tournaments," MacDonald said. "I think we've all learned from that and I think everyone's game is finally starting to come around and peak at the right time. Our confidence is starting to keep building and I feel like everyone's game is getting to where it needs to be for this weekend so we're all pretty pumped."

The 'Hawks face an uphill battle playing in a field that features No. 33 Kent State University, a team ranked almost 100 spots higher than any other MAC school.

"I think any team that wants to be any good has one their goals as winning a conference championship," Zedrick said. "There are a handful of teams you just have to be respectful of. I think if we go out and play our best golf, will we have a chance to win? Absolutely. There are several teams that are going to be able to say that. We've just got to go focus on taking care of our business and then see where that puts us on Sunday afternoon."

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