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Wildcat golf swings back into action

Matthew Vislosky

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Dani O'Keefe takes a swing during practice for the fall 2014 season at Bidwell Park. Photo credit: John Domogma

The Chico State women’s golf team will be getting back into the swing of things on Feb. 23 in Austin, Texas.

After coming off its best finish in the fall at third place, keeping that momentum up can be a struggle. But this time it is a little different, said Nick Green, the team’s head coach.

“Luckily this semester as opposed to last, we were able to start as soon as everyone got back,” Green said.

The team will have about five weeks worth of practice before its first tournament, compared to last fall when they only had eight days to prepare.

Green hopes that the five weeks they have will keep the momentum on the upswing, he said.

St. Edward’s Invitational – Feb. 23-24

Austin, Texas

The ‘Cats first tournament of the spring season will be at Grey Rock Golf Club in Texas, where they have never played before. However, senior Dani O’Keefe said that adjusting to the new course will not be hard for her.

“I’ve been doing it a lot since being in Chico,” she said. “The practice rounds are very important to get a feel for the course.”

Cal State East Bay Tim Tierney Shootout – March 2-3

Vallejo

The Tim Tierney Shootout will be returning to Hiddenbrooke Golf Course this spring. Last year, the Wildcats finished second in the tournament as a team.

The course will be tricky and they have to stay focused the whole time, O’Keefe said.

“This golf course is very tight on tee shots, approaches and the greens can be quite tricky,” she said.

Cal State Monterey Bay Otter Invitational – March 23-24

Seaside

The Wildcats will be heading back to Black Horse Golf Course for the Otter Invitational. Last year Chico State finished in a tie for fifth with Sonoma State. O’Keefe shot a score of 86 and 83 throughout the two days, placing her in a tie for 48th.

“I didn’t play well there last year, but I know that I can this year,” she said.

Western New Mexico Mustang Intercollegiate – April 3-4

Goodyear, Arizona

The Wildcats will travel back to Palm Valley Golf Club, where last year they finished in second place behind St. Edwards University. Leading the ‘Cats was O’Keefe, who shot a total of 149 through two rounds.

West Regional Preview – April 6-7

Rohnert Park

It will be a quick turnaround for the Wildcats as they head to Foxtail Golf Club with one day of rest. They ended the fall season at this course and took home with a third-place finish.

This tournament is going to be the toughest for the team, said Abbey McGrew, a sophomore golfer.

“We have a tournament two days before this in Arizona,” McGrew said. “I think it will be a good challenge to play four tournament rounds in six days.”

Interwest Wildcat Invitational – April 20-21

Chico

The last tournament before the NCAA Championship West Regional is the Wildcat Invitational, which will be played at the Butte Creek Country Club. O’Keefe and McGrew feel like playing at home will be an advantage for them, they said.

“I believe by the time our tournament comes around we will be prepared and know the golf course like the back of our hand,” O’Keefe said.

Matthew Vislosky can be reached at [email protected] or @MattVislosky on Twitter.

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Wildcat golf swings back into action