College athletes train all year to get better at their craft. While football and basketball players may be viewed as the most physical specimens, members of the TCU men’s golf team have dedicated themselves to the sport by using training methods once thought of as unnecessary, the coach said.
“The better players are always in the weight room,” Coach Bill Montigel said. “The attitude about strength and conditioning has changed in the sport, and the best players in the world are the ones in the best shape. It is incredible how much time our guys spend lifting weights. We have 16 to 18 hours of mandatory training a week, but they put in so much work in addition to that.”
Montigel singled out the work ethic of junior Travis Woolf and senior James Sacheck as main factors in the players’ success on the greens.
“Those are two guys that do all of the right stuff,” he said. “Travis Woolf is the perfect example of someone who has worked extremely hard on his body. Sacheck is a guy who will run three to four miles from his house to practice at 6:30 in the morning, do the work out and run back home.”
Woolf, a Paschal High School graduate, participated in all 12 tournaments a year ago, averaging 74.63 strokes over 35 rounds.
Sacheck became the second golfer in TCU history to earn a berth at the NCAA National Championships, joining Chad Magee. He posted a 74.03 stroke average in 13 tournaments.
Both Woolf and Sacheck qualified for the U.S. Amateur tour last season. For Sacheck, it marked the fourth time he has qualified.
Montigel said the team has prepared for this upcoming season by working out constantly, and focusing on stretching and flexibility as well as on the mental aspect of the game.
In order to decide who will play in the season opening tournament in Lawrence, Kan. on Monday, the team held four team-qualifying tournaments comprised of three rounds each. The four players with the lowest scores in each qualifier earned a shot to play in the invitational.
Sophomore Tom Hoge, Woolf and seniors Robby Ormand and Sacheck will participate in the Kansas Invitational.
Last season, Hoge shot 70 or lower in three of his eight rounds as a freshman. He averaged 73.5 strokes per round
“We tried to make the qualifying rounds as challenging as possible,” Montigel said. “Excelling in golf takes a combination of patience, good ball-striking and being mentally tough.”