For the first time since its inception in 2012, the Texas A&M Club Golf Team has qualified for the NCCGA National Championship at the WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma.
After a weekend of competition from Nov. 15-17 at the 36-hole course, the team earned an eighth place finish, while business administration freshman Scott Skrocki placed 14th as an individual.
To Golf Club President and agricultural economics junior Elijah Finn, the weekend was a great opportunity to represent the talent of Texas A&M.
“At the beginning of this semester, I set a goal for the team to qualify for Nationals and not to take anything less than that,” Finn said. “We had several families of players come up to watch them at Nationals, so we were able to enjoy a couple nice dinners at the resort and reconnect with family members, all while relishing in the sights and sounds Oklahoma has to offer.”
The Club Golf Team competed in two tournaments in addition to Nationals, winning second place in their first tournament in Austin and first place in the Dallas tournament.
“Throughout the season, the team as a whole made strides to not only compete, but compete with passion,” Finn said. “Qualifying for Nationals for the first time in TAMU Club Golf history was a byproduct of all the hard work my players put in behind closed doors during the regular season, and a testament to setting your goals high and not limiting yourself to previous accomplishments.”
Over the semester, the team met twice a week to work on their swings and strategies, and competed against each other in friendly inter-team show-offs, building camaraderie among the team members in the individual sport.
Business honors senior and team treasurer Ravi Shekhar said he works closely with Finn to organize the practices and run the club from behind the scenes.
“Our scores dramatically improved throughout the season and I attribute that to the comfort level of the guys on the team,” Shekhar said. “Each one of the guys on the team has become closer over the semester and feels more a part of the team, instead as an individual player.”
Alongside the hard work the team puts in, Finn said what helped the team make it to the National Competition was a future-oriented mindset that he has worked to instill in his members throughout the season.
“I always encourage my team to think about the next shot, because like in life, you can only control what you do going forward,” Finn said. “The only important thing is moving on from that bad shot, or bad break in life, and turning it into a positive that you can learn from moving forward.”
Finn and Shekhar said they have high hopes for next year’s team, expecting them to get another shot at Nationals and through their hard work and dedication, bring home the title.
“When you start focusing on something bigger than yourself, the individual goals and accomplishments come along with it,” Finn said. “Going off our precedence of having a positive mindset and setting your goals high, while also coming off one of the most successful Fall seasons in team history, I’m expecting nothing less than to bring home a National Championship to College Station in the Spring.”