Sunday, January 20, 2008

Freshman Steve Ziegler on just missing qualifying

I arrived at Stanford and was immediately thrown into the new experience of being a collegiate student-athlete. I still remember how I felt excited, scared, anxious, and curious I was to see how the schoolwork and the golf would be.
At our first practice I remember playing a bunker game with Daniel and Joseph where we had to land our ball on golf towels laid out at various distances. We had to hit each towel a certain number of times before we could leave. Daniel and Joseph both finished the drill when I was approximately half way done. Immediately I became frustrated I was behind, but I ground it out and finally finished the drill. I remarked on how close I was getting to the towels and how I was inches away from finishing the drill much sooner. Daniel turned to me with a straight face and said, “Well, get better Ziegler!” but he couldn’t hold his serious face for long and let out a big grin. We laughed and I brushed it off, but then again there was some merit to his statement.
The season progressed and I was routinely one spot on the wrong side of every cut. At practice, we’d primarily play games around the green where the worst three out of nine guys would receive extra biking with coach after our already killer workouts. The first couple of times I thought I played well just to find myself in the seventh spot. Similarly, in qualifying a lot of times I ended up one or two strokes away from filling out the team (the one that hurt the most was missing going to Isleworth by one shot and thus missing hanging with Tiger for a couple days). I guess Lim was right, I needed to get better.
I finally got my first chance to play in a tournament at PGA West in Palm Springs. I’ll never forget how nervous I was for the front nine of that tournament. I have played a lot of tournament golf before but I was tight as a drum; I couldn’t put a swing on the ball I made a quadruple-bogey on my eighth hole and played my first nine in nine over par! However, I pulled it together and finished four under on my second nine for a sensational 77. I played well the rest of the week and everything turned out to be ok.
Another memorable round was during qualifying to go to Cordevalle. I was tied with Daniel after two rounds so it came down to a heads-up match at the Peninsula Club. For one of the few rounds of the season, I got my putter working and ended up shooting 66 (Daniel shot 71) It was a gratifying feeling no doubt to pull off a good round when I needed it. In hindsight, as we were shaking hands I should have told Daniel that I was just listening to his advice.
Steve Ziegler

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Jordan Cox on his motivated teammates

This fall quarter was my most enjoyable golf experience at Stanford thus far. To say that I wasn’t disappointed not to have a team win would be far from the truth; however, winning isn’t everything in a golf. Getting to know the 4 new freshmen and interacting with the team this past quarter was awesome. The great part about this team is that aside from having one of the best teams in the country, we have a group of motivated individuals who are genuinely great people.

The team traveled to Japan, Chicago, Palm Springs, Florida, and San Jose, California. What can be better than getting to travel the country to play golf with good friends and getting a Stanford education on top of that? In my opinion aren’t too many things better in life. To add to the fun, the guys on this team are some of the most competitive people I have ever met in my life. This is great because it pushes everyone on the team to constantly get better. In practice, on the golf course, and even in the weight room, the guys on the team are always trying to one up each other. It has helped my game in a large way and I am now playing some of the best golf of my life.

I would have to say that the most memorable experience this fall was traveling to Sonoma with the team and playing Mayacama golf club. This was amazing because we got to play Mayacama, one of the most beautiful golf courses in northern California, and everyone of the team spent several days together doing what we love the most. Golf! I think this trip is one of the reasons why the team bonded to well so early in the season and is going to be an event that helped ump start a successful season. Essentially we were living together and doing absolutely everything together. It will go down as one of my favorite golf trips at Stanford without a doubt. It is a privilege to be a part of the Stanford golf team, and I wear the block “S” on my chest with pride. Go Cardinal!

Jordan Cox, sophomore

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Freshman Sihwan Kim on his Fall season

When I first heard that I’m going to Japan for Topy Cup, I was super pump up to play in collegiate tournament for the first time. I didn’t quite know what to do after the announcement but to practice hard as I can to help my team out to win the tournament oversea. We fought hard in Japan, all of us grinded to get that first victory of the year. Although we finished 3rd in the field, I thought we did pretty well with all that pressure on top of us as defending NCAA Champions. We had a lot of fun over at Japan during and after the tournament and that will forever be in my memory.
My first work out was a total disaster. We did 300 yard shuttles 3 times and I was gone. I couldn’t walk for four days straight after that and I played one of the worst rounds of the year. The second work out was even more disastrous. We did 1000 YARD SUICIDES TWICE!!!!! I never felt more physically challenged in my life and my heart was about to burst out of my body. My body felt heavy all that weak. I still have a lot of trouble with work outs in the morning. But I’m super excited and happy that I’m getting stronger every second I work out in the morning.

The best part about the Stanford Men’s Golf team is its members. Coach Ray, Coach Tight, Grube, Dodge, Lim, Cox, JB, Zigs, Graham, Sultan and Me. It is a lot fun to play with these guys because they all have different playing styles and personalities on the golf course. When we go to tournaments, we support each other a lot. We pump each other up on the golf course and in the team meeting. It is just amazing what a team can do with your mind set. I personally think that I become very positive around the team.

Freshman, Sihwan Kim