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Golf women excel in leadership

Story by Mallory TuckerStaff writer

Jenny Rohl/The News Junior golfer Abbi Stamper expresses that her motivation comes from watching other teams play.

Jenny Rohl/The News
Junior golfer Abbi Stamper expresses that her motivation comes from watching other teams play.

Some leaders are loud, outspoken and enthusiastic. Some leaders are quiet, reserved and logical.

All successful leaders must lead by example, which is exactly what juniors Abbi Stamper and Sophie Hillier plan to do when they return in the fall as captains of the 2015-16 women’s golf team.

“They are two completely different personalities, which is what you want in a captain,” said Head Coach Velvet Milkman. “You don’t want captains to be the same person. Different personalities gravitate toward different people. So yes, Abbi is the more outgoing one, the more bubbly one. She’s the one beforehand high-fiving and saying, ‘We got this.’ Sophie is the more reserved, but leads by example. You will not find anyone that works any harder than her. And people are very comfortable going and talking to her, as well.”

Over the summer, both women will play in various tournaments without the stress of balancing schoolwork. Hillier will return to Sandy, England and Stamper to Frankfort, Ky., where they will both try to improve their scores by two strokes, the goal Milkman assigned to both before beginning fall golf.

As an international student, Hillier believes playing collegiate golf will make her a better person going into the real world. In England, collegiate athletics are not commonplace, as university is the only focus for students. … Continue Reading

Men’s golf take eighth place in OVC

May 1, 2015 Athletics, Golf

Story by Mallory TuckerStaff writer

Led by All-OVC senior golfer Jordan Smith, the Racers jumped from seventh place to claim a share of second from 14 shots back. Despite six of the last seven holes being the most difficult, Smith and junior Brock Simmons carded scores of 71 during the last round, tying for the third day in a row and sharing the eighth place spot overall.

Smith attributes the Racers’ swift improvement to the team as a whole and their ability to support each other’s higher rounds.

“We had been having where everybody would just have one bad round all at the same time,” Smith said. “We kind of picked up whoever was playing bad that round. We didn’t have two people play really bad at the same time, which helped out.”

The last day didn’t provide a perfect start, however, as Smith struggled at first.

“I couldn’t get anything going,” Smith said. … Continue Reading

Women drop championship

April 24, 2015 Athletics, Golf

Story by Mallory Tucker, Staff writer

Courtesy of Dave Winder Sophie Hillier from Sandy, England drives the ball down the green.

Courtesy of Dave Winder
Sophie Hillier from Sandy, England drives the ball down the green.

The women’s golf team was unable to repeat their OVC Championship performance from last year and come home with a title, but sophomore Minta Yin placed second overall as the team took home sixth of the 10 OVC teams April 22 at Hampton Cove, a Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail in Owens Crossroads, Ala.

“We did (hope for better),” Head Coach Velvet Milkman told GoRacers.com. “But I saw a lot of positives this week, especially Minta. We’re a young team and I think that showed with nerves and that kind of thing. The future is bright for our program if we keep working hard and keep improving.”

Finishing the first round in fifth place with a total score of 312 and improving to tie for fourth with 306 at the end of the second round, the Racers tallied another 306 finish Wednesday but were unable to catch fifth place Morehead State, just four strokes below. Tournament champion Eastern Kentucky finished just one stroke ahead of second place Jacksonville State. … Continue Reading

Men’s golf tees off to OVC

April 24, 2015 Athletics, Golf

Story by Mallory Tucker, Staff writer

The men’s golf team tees off in the first round of the OVC championship Friday in Muscle Shoals, Ala.

With a two week break since their last tournament, Tennessee State’s Big Blue Intercollegiate in Nashville, Tenn., the team has been preparing by traveling to various courses in the area more similar to The Shoals, the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail that the men will compete on, including the Paducah Country Club in Paducah, Ky., and the Tennessean in Springville, Tenn.

The final lineup of the season has been set by Head Coach Eddie Hunt, and it includes senior Jordan Smith and juniors Duncan McCormick, Brock Simmons, Jordan Gosser and Preston French. Of the five, Simmons is the only golfer that hasn’t competed in the OVC Championship.

“We looked at the last two tournaments,” Hunt said. “And those five really played better than everybody else. And I think over the year, that was our best lineup. Experience-wise, I think that they earned a spot. I think we’ve got a good group.”

Jacksonville State is a favored team heading into the tournament, but Hunt thinks every team is just as capable of taking home a title. … Continue Reading

Men place eighth in Big Blue

April 17, 2015 Athletics, Golf
Photo Courtesy of Dave Winder Sophomore Matthew Zakutney, from Paducah, Ky., sends the ball into hole nine.

Photo Courtesy of Dave Winder
Sophomore Matthew Zakutney, from Paducah, Ky., sends the ball into hole nine.

The Racers placed eighth of 13 in Tennessee State’s Big Blue Intercollegiate April 13-14 at the Hermitage Golf Club Presidents Reserve in Old Hickory, Tenn.

Junior Brock Simmons carded the best finish in his collegiate career with a 13th place finish in the field of 75 competitors.

Scoring a two-under-par 214, Simmons led the Racers’ other participants: senior Jordan Smith in 27th, juniors Preston French, Jared Gosser, Duncan McCormick and Matthew Zakutney in 34th, 38th,43rd and 53rd respectively, and sophomore Myles Morrissey in 58th. … Continue Reading

Women’s golf finishes fourth

April 17, 2015 Athletics, Golf
Photo Courtesy of Dave Winder Junior Abbi Stamper, from Frankfort, Ky. drives a ball across the green.

Photo Courtesy of Dave Winder
Junior Abbi Stamper, from Frankfort, Ky. drives a ball across the green.

The women’s golf team finished fourth in a field of 11 at their home tournament, the Murray State Invitational, April 10-11 at Frances E. Miller Memorial Golf Course in Murray.

Sophomore Minta Yin and freshman Moa Folke, last week’s OVC Co-Golfer of the Week, led the Racers with two top-10 finishes in fifth and ninth, respectively.

The University of Cincinnati, Morehead State and Xavier carded lower scores than the Racers, but Murray State scored 13 strokes lower than their next closest conference competitor Belmont. Headed into the OVC Tournament Monday through Wednesday in Huntsville, Ala., the Racers have prepared by facing non-conference opponents all season. … Continue Reading

Women’s golf prepares to host Murray State Invitational

April 10, 2015 Athletics, Golf

Coming off the confidence boost of a 12th place finish in a field of 18 nonconference teams at Ole Miss’ Rebel Intercollegiate April 3-5 in Oxford, Miss., the women’s golf team is preparing to host the Murray State Invitational at Miller Memorial Golf Course in Murray.

The three-round tournament starts today with two rounds after an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start and will continue with the final round starting at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow. Tournament admission is free to the public.

“I was very pleased with how we played at Ole Miss,” said Head Coach Velvet Milkman. “We shot lower scores than we did the week before. And that’s our goal is to just get better every week out. And we did that. So it was nice to go down and put three good rounds together.”

A tournament title on their home course this weekend would make it the team’s third consecutive and seventh of the past eight years. Milkman’s goal, however, is just to improve on last week’s scores.

“We’re just sticking with the game plan of each week going out and getting better,” Milkman said. “I hope to be better come Sunday morning than we are now, and that just comes from going out and playing and handling yourself in different situations. So just continued improvement.” … Continue Reading

Men’s golf hopes to duplicate Tennessee Tech tournament

April 10, 2015 Athletics, Golf

With two weeks off since its last tournament and the emergence of better weather, the men’s golf team is ready to face conference play for the first time in a month. At their Tennessee Tech tournament March 16-17, the Racers placed second of 15.

Head Coach Eddie Hunt hopes to duplicate their results Monday and Tuesday as the participate in Tennessee State’s Big Blue Intercollegiate in Nashville, Tenn.

Led by senior Jordan Smith, the Racers have had a few good days of practice at Miller Memorial Golf Course before they take on the last tournament before the OVC Championship April 24-26.

“Our leader, Jordan Smith, I think he’s really primed to have a good tournament,” Hunt said. “He really looks forward to these type of events. We’re playing against some of the better players in the OVC this week and I think we’re getting ready to have a vote for the all-conference team. I know he’s in the running and I think he wants to have a good showing. Him being the only senior, his goal from the first of the year was to win the OVC championship. In our conference, till the last day you’ve got a shot to win the championship. So that’s our goal, and I think it’s a realistic goal. If everybody plays up to their potential, I think we can do that.” … Continue Reading

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