Monday, February 11, 2013

Senior Steven Kearney shares many highlights from his 4 years at Stanford

Editor's Note - Steven Kearney wrote this only a few weeks before his best Stanford finish in the Hawaii tournament where he tied for 4th overall and shot 208 to lead the team.

It feels like just yesterday that I was writing my freshman year blog. How time flies! Each year has brought both excitement and surprises, and this year has been no exception so far. We started off the season by going to Scotland for an entire week and played some of the most incredible courses in the world. We even got to meet up with the St. Andrews golf team and spend some time touring the city. I also found out that the pot bunker on 17 is even deeper than it looks on television! Our first tournament of the season was at Olympia Fields in Chicago at the same time as the Ryder Cup. After our practice round we were able to make it out there and watch some of the matches. Shane and I were able to squeeze through the crowd to get a glimpse of Tiger on the par 3 17th. After he hit it close we started waving our American flags in the air and joined the crowd who had begun singing the National Anthem. There was a lot of patriotism that day and we all really enjoyed it.
This was also the first year that we hosted a match play tournament at Cypress Point in Monterey. To say that it was a unique experience would be an understatement. To play match play on arguably the best golf course in the world is something that college golfers can usually only dream about. One situation that stands out the most to me during the tournament was during the best ball round against Washington. Dominick and I were standing on the 17th tee box with the match all square. We both hit irons off the tee to ensure we stayed out of the giant cypress tree the hangs into the fairway. Then both of the Washington players proceeded to hit drivers and flew into the tree, leaving them with no shot to the green. We ended up winning the match because of that hole. It just goes to show you that playing conservative in some situations can really pay off!
                  Our year is going well so far. We finished off the fall season by giving UCLA a run at the Gifford Invitational at Corde Valle. After Cameron’s incredible 61 the first day, we found ourselves neck and neck with the Bruins on the last nine holes. Unfortunately we weren’t able to pull through and lost by a few shots, but it was a great feeling to see everyone grinding it out to the very end. We will see them again many times throughout the rest of the season and I have a feeling it will be a different story next time. The quarter proved to be a challenge academically for the entire team. Playing five tournaments means a lot of time away from school, so everyone has to be on top of their school work and manage their time well. I wrote a 25 page research article for one of my classes. Shane, Cameron, David, and I also wrote a 60 page paper for our group project in another class. Although it can seem like a lot of work at times, we are all used to it by now. We were even able to participate in a community service event with the Boys and Girls club in East Palo Alto. We played soccer and dodgeball with underprivileged youth at an elementary school. Let’s just say that most of the guys on the team should definitely stick to golf!
I was fortunate enough to be able to go to the PAC 12 Championship and the Rose Bowl this year to watch our football team make history. Let’s follow in their footsteps on our way to the 2013 NCAA Championship! Go Card!

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