Golf team optimistic after last place finish at first road tournament

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Staff Writer

Facing difficulties on the first road tournament, the men’s golf team placed seventh out of seven teams in the Cameo Pizza Battle, a two-day tournament that took place Sept. 12–13 at the Plum Brook Country Club in Sandusky, Ohio.
Junior Adam Kanczuzewski noted the momentum going into the tournament and hopes of being successful, but the nerves and pressures that accompanied the competition of the team’s first road tourney.
“This was our first travel as a team. Seven teams in the tournament. We were ready for it, but it was a whole different experience,” said Kanczuzewski. “The pressure is on because we are still building team comradery and this trip kind of helped our five really, I think, come together as a team and as a whole.”
With more eligible players now on the roster, the team placed five qualifiers in the week leading up to the tournament, determining who would participate and travel to Plum Brook. The five qualifiers were junior CJ Kowalski, playing first; junior Adam Kanczuzewski, playing third; junior Jonathon O’Dell, playing fifth; senior Zach Spaulding, playing fourth; and sophomore Ryan Rapp, playing second.
The Titans drew their shortcomings through mental mistakes on the course and were unable to complete any practice rounds before the start of the tournament due to heavy rain. Head coach Justin Akers, however, still took the lead in coaching his team by driving around the course and informing his players of how strong and which way the wind was blowing. Akers went through pin locations, informed his team of where to get in play and assisted them throughout the entire course and tournament.
“He does a great job coaching us,” Kanczuzewski said.
The first day of the tournament, the Titans shot a team score of 321, which left the group in last place but only eight shots away from second place.
“We had the mindset to not finish last,” Kanczuzewski said. “If we can all improve the second day, we can be in the field and work our way up.”
Kanczuzewski finished the tournament tied at 28th, with individual scores of 83 and 79 giving him a final score of 162.
“Overall as a group, I feel that we are moving in the right direction. It just takes time,” Kanczuzewski said. “We feel more like a team. We are all for the team, working as a team. It doesn’t feel like an individual sport.”
Standing out in the tournament was Kowalski who finished in a tie for sixth place and only seven strokes outside of first place. With individual scores of 76 on both days, Kowalski received a total score of 152 and earned a spot in the top ten out of 42 total competitors.
The team finished together with a day-one score of 321 and a day-two score of 325 for an overall score of 646 and seventh place in the Cameo Pizza Battle.
Continuing to gain experience in preparation for the spring season, the team heads next to Ada, Michigan where they will participate in a tournament at the Egypt Valley Country Club on Sept. 28–29.

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