By Mason Nesbitt, Sports Information Director
Master’s University will begin the year at a scoreable but tricky Lincoln Park Golf Course in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, on Sept. 4-5. The venue features considerable wind and Bermuda grass.
Bermuda grass, TMU coach Jason Semelsberger said, adds a level of complexity to reading greens. And, because it’s “sticky,” it can grab at clubs during attempts to escape the rough.
Another challenging part of the season-opening meet – dubbed the U.C. Ferguson Classic – is that it features national-powerhouse Oklahoma City University. The Stars have won 11 national titles since 2001.
“It’s always great to open the season seeing the best team in the country year in and year out,” said Semelsberger, whose team finished fifth at the event last year.
Then comes the CA State Intercollegiate in Ventura, Calif. on Sept. 17-18. A firm, fast course located a mile off the coast, Semelsberger described Olivas Links Golf Course as “really fun.” With few out-of-bounds or water hazards, and a surface that allows the ball to roll, it encourages players to get creative.
“It fosters more artistry,” Semelsberger said.
This tournament will also give Master’s a chance to see a number of local teams. Last year, Master’s tied for sixth at the event.
This year’s third meet breaks from tradition. In its first trip to Marymount California University’s invite in Palm Springs, Calif., the Mustangs will face tight fairways on October 22 and 23. However, Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort’s relatively short length will give Master’s a chance to shoot low.
“If the guys hit the ball straight, we could score a lot of birdies,” Semelsberger said.
The Mustangs, who missed the NAIA Championship last season, lost the leadership of Josh Delo and Sam Eisenhuth to graduation. But Semelsberger said several players are moving in the direction of stepping into leading roles.
“You can’t replace two guys like that,” he said. “They are mature leaders of men – in the classroom, spiritually, and on the golf course. You can’t replace them. But what you can do is develop new leaders.”
The Mustangs have brought in promising newcomers Jack Dudeck and Jackson Anthony to bolster a talented returning core of Robert Penalber, Josh Kehl and Karsten Briley.
See the full fall schedule here.