Flying with the Golden Eagles

The California State University, Los Angeles women's golf team, coached by Hans Kersting, pose for a photo. Photo courtesy of Hans Kersting

That’s a Wrap!

I recently concluded coaching the inaugural season for the women’s golf team at California State University, Los Angeles. It was a season I will certainly never forget.

Having been hired only a few weeks before the start of the 2017-18 school year, I had no time to recruit golfers into our new program. So, where would my initial players come from?

Social media—of course.

With the help of our social media director on campus, we launched a social media recruiting campaign among current students at the university.

The premise was simple.

Anybody with previous golf experience should contact me if interested in joining our new golf team.

Low and behold, I, eventually, found my teams first five golfers. The “Facebook Five,” as they ought to be named. Each came to me with similar backgrounds. Most played for their high school golf team, but none were considered college golf material.

Regardless, we had our first official roster.  Practice could begin.

After a few weeks of practice, it became clear to me that I had a special group of young ladies on my team. Not only did they possess great character, but they were all great students, as well.  So great that our cumulative GPA during the fall semester was nearly a 3.5.

As word of our program began to spread through the college ranks, I began receiving plenty of interest from various prospects. In fact, we eventually landed a top transfer from a community college in San Diego. She joined our team in January and brought some much-needed experience to our squad.

More importantly, though, she fit in perfectly with our original five players. They all quickly became great friends.

Our spring season consisted of four tournaments.  We began in San Diego in early February, before concluding with our conference championship in Sonoma a couple of weeks ago.

The improvement of our golf team throughout the tournament season was remarkable.

Our team scoring average at our conference championship was nearly forty strokes lower than the first two tournaments we competed in. That equates to eight strokes per player, per round.

Finally, our team was clearly not as talented as those we were competing against.  All we could expect was to be the best version of ourselves. With that in mind, we were able to set a lofty goal for ourselves after our first tournament of the season. If this goal was met, I would jump in a lake.

I’m happy to say I have finally dried off from my jump in the lake at our conference championship.

Mission accomplished.

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