Boys’ golf prepares to tee off against Hickman

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Jordan Rogers

The boys’ golf team will tee off against their cross town rivals Hickman Kewpies today, March 22, in their third match of the season[2-0]. The Bruins look to get off to a hot start to their season after finishing their 2017 season at fourth in state.
The beginning of the new season marks the end of an offseason spent practicing and perfecting skills necessary to compete with other schools around Mo.
“I played in more tournaments this fall and winter to keep my game sharp,” junior Ross pteelman said. “I also went to South Carolina and Georgia [to play golf]. I’ve been working hard on my putting and gaining consistency with it.”
While some sports practice smaller things like fielding ground balls or working on a specific area of play, head coach Austin Reed, preaches that the best way to get better at golf is to just go out and play.
“Most of our preparation is really just to go out and play golf,” Reed said. “We’ve done a little bit of putting and our short game work, but I feel like playing is the best instructor for golf, and walking with the guys and talking to them, I know they talk to each other about shots and how their preparing. So we’ve played a lot of golf, and also we have “tee time” every day at lake of the woods after school.”
Freshman Landon Bruer also put in a lot of work during the offseason working around his basketball schedule which he says prepared him to play under pressure.
“I played freshman basketball, so I didn’t have a lot of time to practice consistently, but I tried to go to my coach Jake Poe every once in a while and hit balls with him,” Bruer said. “Once basketball was over I started playing [golf] more consistently.”
For Steelman, who enters his final year of golf at Rock Bridge, this season brings extra encouragement and excitement towards winning it all than previous seasons.
“I want to win state [not just] individually [but] as well as a team,” Steelman said. “This being my last high school season, I’d like to go out with a bang. I also want to have a stroke average under 70 [this season].”
While accomplishing these goals will help the physical side of golf for Steelman, he also wishes to improve his mentality when under pressure. Top tier golfers around the world are able to hone into their ability during tough circumstances in a match, which is what Steelman hopes to be able to do.
“I want to improve my ability to make pars instead of bogeys,” Steelman said. “The best players would rather bite their arm off than drop a shot, and I want to improve my mentality on something like that.”
Winning state is not just a goal of the golfers, but also for Reed, who thinks the team has more potential than what they showed last year in the state tournament.
“I think for our team, we have a lofty goal of winning state,” Reed said. “So that would be trying to get to first place in state. Last year we got fourth in state, and I think many of our guys felt like they could’ve played better in the state tournament. There’s no doubt that these guys are really good at golf, and their driven to kinda meet that goal.”