As the temperatures start to rise, the Loyola women’s golf team is focused on perfecting the final details of its game.
Head coach Carly Werwie said this spring the team has transitioned well from practicing inside to playing outside tournaments. She said the team has also progressed mentally, improving on fixing its errors while out on the course and she’s glad to see the pieces coming together ahead of the last two tournaments.
After the Bradley Spring Invitational was canceled for March 30-31, the Indiana State Spring Invitational is the only one left before the final tournament of the season. The Indiana State Spring Invitational will take place April 7-8 and the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Championship will take place April 14-16.
With the MVC Tournament ahead, Werwie said now being able to practice outside will allow the golfers to work on their short games and improve their chipping and putting. She said they’ve been focused on hitting from different distances and making sure they’re just as comfortable at various points.
“I think a lot of it for spring play is just having you’re short game pretty solid,” Werwie said. “You never know what can happen with the weather, but if you can chip and putt, normally you’ll end up doing fairly well.”
The Indiana State Spring Invitational will be good experience before the MVC Championship since some MVC schools, including Indiana State and University of Evansville, will be at the Indiana State tournament, senior Elayna Bowser said. She said it’ll also give them practice with the type of weather they can expect, which will be rainier.
The Ramblers looked at where they needed to improve after the fall, and one of these areas was lowering their scores, Bowser said. She said their practices over the winter also worked on short game work since she said that’s where they needed to pick up those strokes most.
This is Werwie’s first year at the helm and she said even in this initial year, she can see the team members motivate each other well on-and-off the golf course. She said having a new coach come in might have made the golfers a bit apprehensive, but she thinks they’ve started to see the results in their performances.
“It’s been a really … good season,” Werwie said. “Overall, just a lot of learning both for them and myself.”
Bowser said the MVC Championship will be tough for everyone, as it is every year, but they just have to keep focused throughout.
“It’s just a matter of putting three solid rounds together as a team,” Bowser said.
The team’s biggest strength is its determination on the golf course, according to Werwie. She said in the fall and spring, there have been instances where they do well in their first round, not as well in the second round, but come back and do their best in the last round. She said this is great to see since after two rounds, it can be easy for the golfers to get down on themselves.
This season, Bowser has stood out to Werwie as one of the team’s top players, especially with her two wins and two runner-up finishes in the fall. Werwie said she has also noticed first-year Lorenza Martinez and junior Morgan Brown, since the two have both made progress since the fall and have kept improving their scores in practice and in their tournaments.
Bowser said Martinez adjusted to her first year on the team well and worked a lot over the winter on the points she needed to improve on.
“[Martinez] has definitely shown improvement since she first came here,” Bowser said. “I know it’s tough … the transition from high school to college golf.”
With only two tournaments left, Werwie said no matter what the results are, she’ll be happy the women have made progress this year that they can build on in the future.
“I’m looking forward to the last few weeks,” Werwie said. “It’s really hard to believe we’re already down to basically … the end of it … hopefully it’ll be a really good finish.”
The women’s golf team is scheduled to play at the Indiana State Spring Invitational April 7-8 in Terre Haute, Indiana.