Fall 2017 marks the inaugural season of the Gophers’ first ever Men and Women’s golf teams. This is the first time Goucher has had a varsity golf team, marking the beginning of a new era in Goucher athletics. News of an upcoming golf team generated many questions amongst the community, most notably with concerns that the Goucher Woods would be torn down to build a new golf course.
Students can now rest assured that a golf course is not a part of the ten-year plan, but excellence from the new team certainly is. The women’s team recently finished third in their first event, the Bay Creek invitational, lead by first-year Emmie Starchvick from Jacksonville Ore. Emily Pochet, Lauren O’Leary, and Whitney Duran, all first years, also performed well. Dropping seven, eight, and three strokes from the first to second days. The Women’s Team’s next event was September 23rd at Susquehanna. Meanwhile, the Men’s team finished fourth overall at the Bay Creek invitational, with first-years Evan Yue and Roberto Mikse leading, both shooting a 79 on Tuesday.
Overall Goucher placed four students in the Top-25. Not too shabby for a start. The Men’s team will play again on September 24th in Rocky Mount, N.C. The majority of both teams are first-years, with only one junior, Kianna Haskin, playing on the women’s side.
Both teams are led by Coach Hunter Brown, a well-qualified head coach of the Men’s and Women’s teams. He played collegiate golf at the University of Texas at Arlington from 2000-2013, winning three-time all-conference honors, two-time All-America Scholar honors, a Southland conference team championship, and the opportunity to compete in multiple NCAA regional championships. As a graduate, he has competed in various levels of professional golf, with his most notable achievement, a Monday qualifier for the 2014 PGA Tour’s Valero Texas Open. He now dedicates most of his time to coaching. He is a Baltimore resident, an active member of the Freedom Church and a part-time graduate student at the St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Roland Park. We asked Coach Hunter some questions about the Golf teams and he was more than happy to oblige.
Q: Where does the Golf team practice?
A: Most of the time we practice at Hillendale Country Club – this is our home course and is a great facility that gives us everything we need to improve!
Q: Do you have to have a car to be on the Golf team?
A: You don’t, but it is very helpful! Hillendale is about a 15 minute drive from campus. Some of our players carpool, but it is easier logistically with a car.
Q: What schools do the golf teams (men and women) compete against and how are we ranked?
A: We play against almost any other DIII school from North Carolina to New York. Rankings are done through a third party source (Golfstat) and rankings have yet to be posted for this season but will be available soon.
Q: Do the men and women practice together?
A: Not usually. Most of our practices are separate, but occasionally we overlap with things we are doing together.
Q: What are the teams’ hopes for the season?
A: We are really focusing on developing the right culture and qualities in our team this year. If we can improve as golfers and simultaneously develop in character and work ethic then I think we’ll be pleased with our season.
Q: How long is your season?
A: In the fall we play until late October. In the spring we play from March until May.
Q: What is the best thing about the new golf teams (mens/womens or both)?
A: I think we have structured the program in a really incredible way. Everything is designed around caring for our players and giving them everything they need to develop. We’ve got a really great group on both teams and I think we are going to turn this into one of the best programs in all of college golf!