Often times it takes a new club golf team a semester or two to get their feet wet before they become a threat in NCCGA competition; that is ANYTHING but the case for Laura Kanouse's newly formed University of Florida Club Golf team. I had the chance to ask her a few questions on how she put together a new team that was able to come out on top in the NCCGA spring Florida Regional 1 at The Claw at University of Southern Florida this past weekend.
How did the team get started?
Laura: Other students were trying to start a team individually but we all had to come together to start a club golf team. I had competed my whole life and wanted to keep playing tournaments.
You're clearly a competitive golfer, why did you not play varsity golf?
Laura: I didn't like the cold and didn't want to play up North. I had other offers to play at good programs but wanted to focus on academics and other college extracurriculars. I'm also majoring in Biomedical Engineering which demands a lot of time that would make playing varsity a challenge with all of the time I put into my academics.
Are other players on your team serious students like you?
Laura: Yes! Everyone on our team is serious about their work which is actually nice as we are all in the same boat. We have accountants, grad students, pre-med, pre-farm, and finance majors just to name a few.
How did you recruit your team?
Laura: I used facebook and twitter to contact students on campus, developed a membership with our campus course, and formalized a practice schedule on Sunday afternoons to accommodate our team's busy schedules.
How big is the team?
Laura: 13 people tried to qualify for the first tournament and we have 25 people consistently involved altogether.
How did you get your team gear?
Laura: We noticed a lot of NCCGA teams had matching shirts and gear, so when we heard that NCCGA had a relationship with State Traditions, we were thrilled at the opportunity to get our school colors and FL state logo on our shirts! They came out great!
Will we see Florida at the National Championship?
Laura: I really hope so! We didn't play our best last tournament as we were all a little nervous. Ocala National is close to campus and we'll have our best people playing and I think we have a good shot at it.
**Laura Kanouse is a sophomore at University of Florida and founding member of the school's newly formed Club Golf Team. Congratulate them on twitter @FloridaClubGolf Interview performed by Mike Belkin.