The Georgetown University club golf team has come a long way since its creation only three years ago. After a slow start, struggling to recruit motivated players and play competitively, the team gained momentum in its fourth season and has been improving ever since. Club President Sean O’Neill attributes this progress to the creation of a “competitive but fun environment, where players are motivated to play as well as they can in every round of golf.”
Much like other teams, Georgetown’s formalization of practice and preparation for tournaments have helped in motivating players to succeed and gain a bid to the NCCGA National Championship every semester. O’Neill now makes sure that players travel and stay off-campus during tournament weekends. This way, not only can they walk the course before rounds, “they can also build a much closer bond and get to know each other better.”
"This loyalty motivates the players to perform well for each other, and for the overall success of the team." O'Neill said.
The Hoyas advanced to the Spring National Championship at Bryan Park, and came into this season looking to earn a repeat bid. The first tournament was a good start, as the club finished in first by 8-strokes over Towson at Worthington Manor. The team finished in second behind Maryland in the final regional, but the stroke-differential was enough to clinch the region's automatic bid.
As defending regional champions, O’Neill says that the added pressure has been beneficial, and has convinced the team that they are “the best team in the region and clearly have a formula that leads to success.”
He says that Georgetown stands out from other teams competing as they are only participating for the second time in their history. Others teams around the country aren't familiar with the team, or how well they can play. That takes a lot of the pressure off them, and allows them to play more free and confident.
Heading to San Antonio, O’Neill says that “Preparation and motivation are key. Everyone is already very excited to get down to TPC, now I just need to make sure they’re ready to play!”
**Olivia DeFouchier is the NCCGA's Director of Women's Golf. Contact her on Twitter @NCCGA.