By Chardonnae Parker / Managing Editor
With reporting by Anna Babiak
January’s rain and February’s snows have made it difficult for Missouri Valley’ College’s golf teams to train for their season openers in March. The team has experimented with other alternative ways of practicing are for convenience, but those ways may not always be efficient.
The Missouri valley golf teams have resorted to practicing in the Grover C. Redford gymnasium instead of Indian Foothills due to the amount of snow that is passing through Marshall.
“So far the spring has been very challenging. For a couple days we’ll get 70, then it snows, then it gets nice and it melts but the course is closed, so we have hitting nets inside and what we’ve done is paired them up with partners” said first year MVC golf coach Doug Wilkinson. “We’ve tried to use the time to work on our game. They’ve also come in their free time. I know a few of them have talked about traveling to a different state to play where there’s no snow so I think a few of them are going to do that.”
Coach Wilkinson also has ideas about how to better the team this season, regardless of whether they practice on the course or in the gym.
“So I met with all the players when I got here to talk about what they like, what they don’t like, what they’d like to see changed, so I’ve been evaluating with what they’ve talked about.” Wilkinson said. “We’re going to do a little more structured practice, we’re going to have them work on certain things, do certain drills, play. We’re going to utilize our other golf course here in town a little bit more to offset and make it a little more challenging.”
players find this form of practice useful but not effective to their skill development. Golf continues to hit into nets rather than on the fairway until Marshall’s snow days become less and less.
Both the men and women’s teams are hoping for more sunshine. The golf teams have yet to hit off their seasons for the 2020 season.
According Missouri Valley College Sports information director Andy Pulverenti “The Vikings were ranked No. 16 in the preseason poll, released in August, but dropped to No. 22 in the previous coaches’ poll, released last month. Missouri Valley is joined by Grand View (Iowa) University at No. 19, as the only two schools from the Heart of America Athletic Conference ranked.”
The team will T-off for the first time at the start of March. The team hopes that’s the Midwest weather won’t affect the start of the season.