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Men’s Golf: Irish fix errors before Georgia

Peter Steiner | Friday, March 23, 2012

Following a disappointing finish at the Schenkel Invitational last weekend, the Irish will return to Georgia this weekend to compete in the Linger Longer Invitational at Reynold’s Plantation Great Water’s Course in Greensboro, Ga.

Poor play around the greens hampered the Irish at the Schenkel Invitation, but Notre Dame will try to rebound by focusing on the present with a positive attitude, Irish coach Jim Kubinski said.

“We went into last weekend thinking we could contend and we just didn’t play well at all,” Kubinski said. “We a struggled around the greens – chipping, putting. You have to put it behind you. You can’t dwell on it.

“We can learn maybe a little bit from it, but really it’s just a case of us going out and playing a little better this week and I think the guys are motivated to do it. We are looking forward to it.”

One advantage the Irish will have this weekend is familiarity with the course. In addition to playing the at the Reynold’s Plantation Great Water’s Course in previous years, the Irish were also able to play the course over spring break.

“It’s always a good thing to have a familiarity with a course, but then again we had that with the Schenkel and we didn’t play as well,” Kubinski said. “So it’s never a guarantee that you are going to do well, but I think the familiarity is a good thing in this case because we played it last year and had a chance to play it over spring break and I think we made improvements.”

To perform well this weekend, the Irish will continue to rely on senior Max Scodro, who finished 13th individually at the Schenkel Invitation. Scodro was also recently named the Big East Golfer of the Week, which adds to an already-lengthy list of accolades, including 2011 Big East Player of the Year.

“[Max Scodro] has proven the last couple of years that he is the best player in the Big East,” Kubinski said. “Tee to green, he has just been outstanding and then just like any golfer, when the putts are dropping he goes really low, but when they aren’t he is still in good shape . . . It’s all a credit to the hard work he has put in.”

Another top golfer emerged for the Irish at the Schenkel Invitational, when sophomore Andrew Lane finished 27th individually. His solid performance included below-par scores in his final two rounds. Lane competed as an individual last weekend, but will get a chance to continue his strong play in the Linger Longer Invitational as a part of the Irish lineup.

“I expect Andrew is going to do well,” Kubinski said. “He is a great competitor. He said this week that he didn’t have the best ball striking a couple of rounds. He actually shot lower scores because he just competed and used that chipping and putting.”

With the unseasonably warm weather in South Bend, the Irish were able to practice outside at the Warren Golf Course in preparation for their third competitive tournament of the spring season.

“[Wednesday] we had a great short game practice and we played a little bit,” Kubinski said. “We are just trying to clear up those scoring shots that we really dropped the ball on last week. I think we made some improvements and we are comfortable and ready to score well this weekend.”

The Irish will travel to Greensboro, Ga., to compete in the Linger Longer Invitation on Saturday and Sunday.

 

Contact Peter Steiner at psteiner@nd.edu