Another sport at North Dakota State is set to open its 2015 season as the men’s and women’s golf teams will host its Fall Kickoff Tournament/NDSU Triangular at 1 p.m. Monday on the Fargo Country Club golf course.
Men’s Golf Team
The only senior on the team, Connor Holland, may not be injury-free by the time the first tournament of the 2015 golf season rolls around.
Third year head coach Steve Kennedy said the team captain is getting an MRI on his wrist Tuesday after suffering tendinitis in his wrist.
“Not sure when he (Holland) will be back to a 100 percent,” Kennedy said. “He’s not supposed to hit full shots until Friday, so he will start to hit full shots and see how that goes. If he can do it without pain he could play in our tournament on Monday.”
Holland had an 18-hole scoring average of 76.1 last season and a 19th place finish at the Summit League Championship with a three-round total score of 229.
The West Fargo, N.D., native competed in all 10 events last season and started taking on the leadership role late last season.
Kennedy said he could see the younger golfers respect Holland.
“(Holland) is going to do a great job with the younger players,” Kennedy said. “I can tell they are asking him questions, and he’s realizing being that leader will help the team.”
At the end of the season, Kennedy believes his team can finish in the top two in the Summit League, and, with the talented young players on the roster, that is definitely a possibility.
After losing three players to graduation, the Bison had to find fresh talent. Sophomore Nick Myhre will be one of those players.
“He’s been the best qualifier this fall,” Kennedy said. “And he’s really came a long way from last year.”
Last season Myhre competed in one event, the Jackrabbit Fall Invitational, tying for 24th with a three-round score of 228.
Other key returners are sophomore Keaton Lausch and Jake Herdine, both of whom helped the Bison claim a historic fourth-place finish at the Summit League Championship last season for the program.
Women’s Golf Team
Replacing Sarah Storandt, who played in every event during her four-year career, will be NDSU’s biggest challenge this upcoming season.
“We got all but one player back and she’s a hard player to replace,” head coach Matt Johnson, who has been with NDSU for seven seasons, said. “We have young talent with a lot of experience.”
Not to mention Natalie Roth, who is still a sophomore and NDSU’s best player, will look to have an even more successful season this year compared to last season.
Roth played in all 11 events, finished fourth at the Summit League Women’s Golf Championship and was named second team All-Summit League as a freshman.
“Our team’s best player from last year is back, and she’s just a sophomore,” Johnson said. “We have seven ladies on the team, so there will be some good competition; (it’s) hard to say who will be in the top five.”
Senior Cassie Wurm who also competed in 11 events and had an 18-hole scoring average of 79.3 is back for her final season.
The only other senior on the team Hailey Boner, who played in nine events with a 79.4 scoring average, will also look to help the younger players.
“My goal for the group is to get better every single meet,” Johnson said. “We have to get younger players comfortable and we need to learn to be a contender in the Summit League next spring.”