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SMC Golf: Belles anticipate spring season

Megan Golden | Wednesday, March 9, 2011

After practicing their fundamentals on indoor turf all winter long, the Belles are eager to begin the season outdoors as they head into the George Fox Invitational.

Looking forward to her final spring season with the Belles, senior co-captain Mary Kate Boyce emphasized the importance of the roles of every team member in bringing success to the program.

“Each member of our team needs to step up. It is a combined effort that needs to be put in day-in and day-out,” Boyce said. “Whether it is challenging teammates to perform better or comforting them after a tough round or tough week, we each have a duty to help our entire team improve every day, both on the course and off.”

Belles coach Mark Hamilton said he expects the Belles’ two senior captains to take the initiative on and off the course and lead their teammates by example.

“We have a relatively young team, so I’m looking for them to lead the younger players and show them the way we go about things in the spring and the NCAA Championship,” he said. “It’ll be good on the course as far as seeing what their scores are and off the course as far as their demeanor and practice habits.”

George Fox University and the College of Saint Benedict will also be competing at the Invitational. Hamilton said he expects the competition in Phoenix, Ariz., to be a good test for this young Belles squad.

“The team shot a 310 on their first day, and that’s very good. That’s lower than we’ve shot all fall,” he said. “They’re a good team, and I expect the competition to be really high.”

The Belles worked hard all winter on improving their short game, an area that may determine their success.

“We’ve been chipping and putting, and that’s really one of our main focuses,” Hamilton said. “We want to have our short game at a high level right away. It takes a lot of time to work on, but you still have to play well right away.”

Boyce said she and fellow senior and co-captain Rosie O’Connor have high hopes for their last season with the Belles.

“I am pretty excited for our spring season,” Boyce said. “[Rosie and I] would love nothing more than to win the whole thing in May. We have a really talented team this year and we know it’s possible.”

The Belles begin competing in the George Fox Invitational on Friday, March 18.