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ND Women’s Golf: ND recharging its batteries for a win

Meaghan Veselik | Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Irish have had three successful tournaments over the last three weeks and are finally enjoying a few days off the course this weekend before facing their toughest competition so far at the end of fall break.

“After competing the past three weekends we will take this weekend off from golf and just get away from the grind for a few days,” Irish coach Susan Holt said. “This week Tuesday through Friday each player is focusing on their own game and where they need to get better. “

Notre Dame won its first two tournaments this fall before taking fifth in the third. The first title came at Michigan State’s Mary Fossum Invitational on Sept. 26, where the Irish defeated both Michigan State and Kent State, two teams they’ve struggled with in the past.

Playing host to the William K. Warren Invitational the following weekend, the Irish once again dominated on the course and successfully held off Kent State again. The Golden Flashes got their revenge the following week, though, holding the Irish to fifth at the Mercedes-Benz Championship.

Finding areas to improve upon when Notre Dame has finished in the top-five teams of each tournament might be hard for outsiders, but Holt has a clear plan for her team over break.

“Short game is always an area we emphasize in practice and we will continue to do that,” Holt said. “The days off I think will give us a chance to recharge our batteries for the final two tournaments of the fall.”

The first of Notre Dame’s two final events of the fall schedule will be Oct. 22-24 at the UNCW’s Landfall Tradition Invitational at the Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C. Holt said that the tournament will put the Irish “head to head with the best field of 17 teams we have played against this year,” but she still has another game plan ready for the weekend.

“My goal is for each player to play 18 holes of smart and well executed golf for three consecutive days,” Holt said. “As a team we have not yet played our best golf and we are competing very well up to this point but we can and must do better.”

Among the 18 teams that will be competing in Wilmington, seven competed on the same course last May in the NCAA Championships. Among those seven is Duke, the former Landfall Tradition champion. Texas, Florida State, Virginia, Oklahoma State, UCLA and South Carolina will also be returning to the course, as well as some local favorites: Wake Forest, North Carolina, North Carolina State and UNC-Greensboro. But rankings and achievements mean little to this Irish squad, whose focus remains on themselves.

“We really do not concern ourselves with what teams are at the tournament and who we have to beat,” Holt said. “Our goal is to win. Our best chance of winning is to play the golf course the best that we can. If we do this with the talent that we have I feel very confident we will always put ourselves in a position to win. Our toughest competition is against ourselves. We need to get out of our own way and play great golf the way we all know we can.”

Notre Dame will tee off sometime between 8:30 a.m. and 10:36 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 23 in Wilmington.