Golf team banking summer work can provide big boost
The most frustrating part of the De Soto golf team's disappointing regional performance, Wildcat coach Chad Brecheisen said, was that it came on a course the team carved up only two days prior.
So it didn't come as much of a surprise when Brecheisen said consistency is one of the traits he most hopes his team picks up this summer.
Brecheisen said his initial season as the team's coach didn't go as well as he would have liked on the course, but with a little more consistency and more focus on preventing a mistake on one hole from carrying to the rest, he's excited about what the future holds.
"Golf's one of those games where you have to be able to do things day in and day out," he said. "The wind was blowing and we hit a couple bad shots here and there and it really changed the round for some kids. We took some big scores, but it was the kids that were able to manage it a little better that qualified for state."
Brecheisen said from his first day of practice that he was more focused on helping his team's mental game than necessarily critiquing a tee-box swing, or a putting stroke.
Though he said he did tamper with a swing when he had to, the situation worked out to his satisfaction. It's during the summer that he hopes to see his kids further refine their strokes, and he said the blueprints for that have already been laid.
While summer jobs keep athletes in other sports from focusing on improving, he's urged all his players to seek out jobs at golf courses. Now that many have them, he's hoping being around the game and racking up the free golf will have an effect come next spring.
"The kids were disappointed at regionals, but they know where we're at right now," Brecheisen said. "They know they need to practice over the summer and many of them have gotten jobs at golf courses where they can play and do some things."
Graduation will deprive De Soto of several of its top players from this season, and Brecheisen said that will no doubt hurt the program. He said he still felt all the pieces were there, maybe not for a single really low-scoring individual, for a tough, low scoring team.
Of those that played at regionals, Scott McKechnie will return as a senior. Alex Crawl will be a sophomore and Charlie Modreger will be a junior. That group, combined with a number of golfers who spent the season on the edge of varsity, could make a single, battle-tested unit, Brecheisen said.
"We're looking ahead to good things next year," he said. "It's always going to be tough to replace seniors, but the younger guys see it as an opportunity. We've got four or five guys that can shot in the 80s, and if we can do that, we'll always have a chance.
"They're excited for next year and we're going to make the most of it."