By: Wesley Leffelman
The grass is green and school is in session and that means one thing at William Penn, Its golf season. Both Statesmen squads are putting out strong lineups to start of the season. For the women they lose a huge piece of the team in Two-time All-American Demi Coertze. However they return four All-Heart performers from a year ago as well as two other letter winners. After coming into the season being ranked #21 and having three straight conference titles under their belt Coach Rule has to be confident in his ladies. As for the men they are coming in off a solid season in which they finished fourth out of eleven in Heart play last season. Similar to the women the men lost their key player in Spencer Skipper, their only All-Heart golfer. However they did return five letter winners.
To begin the season both squads started out with their own tournament In Moravia, the Midwest Intercollegiate Open. The women had about the most success that you could have possibly have to start a season. To begin with the first team won the tournament and the second team came in second place just short of the first team’s impressive 313 total. Carly Schmalz was notably impressive performance shooting a tournament low 74. It was also Scmalz first tournament since the spring of 2015, taking a redshirt over last year. The men also had an impressive showing in finishing tied for second shooting a solid 295. Clay Tucker had the notable performance getting second shooting a 68, just one stroke short of the lead. As well Frederik Lundsgaard performed at a very high level shooting a 70, good enough to tie for sixth.
Both Carly Schmalz and Clay Tuckers exceptional rounds over the weekend were good enough to win the Heart of America Athletic Conference Golfer of the Week awards. Also noteworthy both golfers hit their best rounds of their collegiate careers on way to the awards.
The women also recorded a second title in their second event of the season and they did it in a dominant fashion. They shot for 302 which ties for the school record and were also the closest to par that they have ever been. Elise Warne led the way for the Statesmen hitting a 73, even par at the Nebraska golf course. Warne earned her first career title and led the way for a line of Statesmen, the first 6 placers all wearing the blue and gold. Coach Rule spoke on how he expected coming in to be dominant and his golfers did not let him down.
Both of the teams have gotten off to a solid start and they look to keep it going. Next up for the women will be at the Buena Vista Invitational in Storm Lake this Saturday and Sunday. The men will be next in action on September 15th at Edmundson Golf Course to host the William Penn 27 Shootout.