Photo IDs (left to right): Kalyn Thayer, Manon De Roey, Sofia Hoglund, Coach Jill Trujillo, Coach Britney Choy, Sammi Stevens, Dea Mahendra, Katerina Jaeger, Manon Molle.
New Mexico Lobos Women’s Golf – at the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational
When/Where: Sunday thru Tuesday; University of Texas Golf Club, Austin
Lobo roster: Sofia Hoglund, Sammi Stevens, Manon De Roey, Katerina Jaeger, Manon Molle’.
The Field: New Mexico, Texas, Arizona State, Furman, Denver, Tennessee, Iowa State, Princeton, San Diego State, Miami, U-Texas San Antonio, TCU, Tulsa, UCLA, UNLV, Southern Methodist, Mississippi State and Tulane.
By Richard Stevens – Senior Writer/GoLobo.com
Lobo Coach Jill Trujillo says she has seen “average” from her New Mexico women’s golf team. Now, she would like to see her Lobos take it up a level while bringing their scores down a few counts.
“We had pretty good showings in our first two events, but I would say we were average for the talent we have on this team,” said Trujillo “If our average is good then we are ahead of the curve.
“But I am waiting to see what’s going to happen when we have four incredible scores to put together.”
The Lobos will try to shoot better than average golf at the 54-hole 2013 Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational to be played Sunday, Monday and Tuesday (Oct. 13-15) at the University of Texas Golf Club. This is the Lobos third tournament of the 2013 fall season.
The Lobos will be playing against Texas, Arizona State, Furman, Denver, Tennessee, Iowa State, Princeton, San Diego State, Miami, U-Texas San Antonio, TCU, Tulsa, UCLA, UNLV, Southern Methodist, Mississippi State and Tulane.
“It’s a strong field,” said Trujillo. “We try to play in the best tournaments we can. If we can finish in the top six in this one, it will be a really good finish for us. There are some great teams coming.”
The New Mexico fivesome for this battle will be seniors Sofia Hoglund, Sammi Stevens, Manon De Roey and freshmen Katerina Jaeger and Manon Molle’. Stevens had led UNM in the previous two tournaments including a runner-up finish at Colorado State’s invite.
The teams tee off on Texas grass Sunday, Monday and Tuesday around 8 a.m. There is a practice round on Saturday. Among the things Trujillo will emphasize in Austin are more focus – and better scoring – on par-5s and stronger finishes on each round.
“They know what they are capable of doing, but we have to finish it up,” said Trujillo. “Sometimes the more you know where you are (on the leader board), the more you think about it and that can lead to a downfall coming down the stretch.
“Some players strive from knowing their position, but most are better off not knowing.”
The par-5s are prime targets for collegiate golfers to throw birdies on their scorecard and the Lobos let that opportunity slip away at the Branch Law Firm/Dick McGuire Invitational. Pepperdine, the team champ, was 22-under par on the par-5s while UNM was 2-over.
“That was a huge factor in winning the tournament,” said Trujillo. “Our par-5 scoring needs to improve. Sometimes they want it so much that they push too hard and forget about the task (or shot) at hand. I’m sure we are going to calm down and play golf and we’ll see some great things from them.”
The Lobo seniors will be looking at the 6,324-yard University of Texas Golf Club for the fourth time.
“Our three seniors know the dangers of this course and where to hit the ball and where not to hit the ball,” said Trujillo. “You also have to get used to the Bermuda grass and the speed of the greens.”
Weather also is a factor in golf regardless of whether it’s a fall or spring season.
“We have been playing different courses around town at different times of the day in different weather conditions,” said Trujillo. “Lobos are typically good, bad-weather players and we have to make sure our freshmen become good, bad-weather players.”
Editor’s Note: Richard Stevens is a former award-winning Sports Columnist and Associate Sports Editor at The Albuquerque Tribune. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.