Miami heads to Maryland for final fall tournament
Published: Thursday, October 18, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 18, 2012 21:10
Miami University’s golf team concludes its fall season in the Georgetown Intercollegiate in Beallsville, Md. Monday and Tuesday. Miami finished 10th out of 12 teams last season in this tournament.
The RedHawks come off a rather disappointing finish at the Firestone Invitational, finishing 12th out of 17 teams, although they had a much more successful second day. The bright spot of the tournament was redshirt junior Mark MacDonald, who tied for eighth place overall, a career-high finish.
MacDonald has competed in all four of Miami’s tournaments this season, but Firestone was the first time he placed in the top 35.
“The mental aspect of my game was the biggest difference [at Firestone],” MacDonald said. “It wasn’t anything physically … I just stayed positive.”
After his strong individual performance, Head Coach Zac Zedrick said MacDonald would not take his foot off the pedal.
“He wants to build off of his success,” Zedrick said. “He’s doing something a little differently to help with his mental approach to his game. He found some things that are helping with his preparation.”
MacDonald is confident enough with his swing that he knows he can duplicate his success at Georgetown if he prepares well and remains strong mentally. In this tournament last year, MacDonald shot well in the first two rounds but struggled in the third, causing him to tie for 35th overall. A tough mental approach should keep that from happening again.
At Firestone, the next closest RedHawk was senior Brett Tomfohrde, who finished 50 spots lower than MacDonald. While this was the largest discrepancy between the first and second place team finishers of the season, this has still been a common theme for the ’Hawks. Miami has seen four top 20 finishers this year, but none have occurred in the same tournament.
In order to get everyone gelling together, Zedrick said the team needs to focus more on the details, practice its routines more and not let past or future events dictate the present.
“We just need to be a little more disciplined,” Zedrick said. “I just want to see — from the emotional or mental standpoint — I just want to see us compete more consistently for 54 holes.”
MacDonald said the team could not become too wrapped up in the score each wants to shoot. The RedHawks can accomplish this not only by being more disciplined but also by building solid relationships and developing strong communication throughout the team.
“[Communication] is really vital to our success,” MacDonald said.
In order to improve in that area, Zedrick called a team meeting after the last tournament to discuss the state of the program. Zedrick said the players have also organized meetings on their own, a positive sign that the relationships between the players have grown.
“The one thing that came out of [the meeting] as a program for us — relationships are the core of our program,” Zedrick said. “Over the last two or three weeks, we didn’t make relationships a priority.”
MacDonald, Tomfohrde, Austin Kelly, Ben Peacock and Daniel Schwarz will represent the Red and White at Georgetown. The team plays the first two rounds Monday and will finish the final round Tuesday. Miami picks back up in February for the spring season.