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Forslund’s decision gives refreshing talent to men’s golf

Forslund’s decision gives refreshing talent to men’s golf

Dallas, Texas, March 12: University of North Texas Mean Green Men’s Golf at Four Seasons golf course during the Spring Break Challenge. 2018 (Photo Rick Yeatts Photography/Colin Mitchell)

Forslund’s decision gives refreshing talent to men’s golf
April 04
17:28 2018

When North Texas men’s golf head coach Brad Stracke received an email from an Swedish athlete who was still deciding between which sport he would pursue in college, Stracke was forced to take a risk.

Despite having never seen him play, he chose to offer Viktor Forslund a spot on his golf team.

He was going to rely solely on the recommendations from his connections in Europe, all of whom beamed when speaking of Forslund’s abilities.

Now, as Forslund enters his first year at North Texas, he’s turning out to be more than Stracke could have possibly hoped for.

“They were right,” Stracke said. “They were right about everything they said about him.”

Forslund started playing golf with his grandparents in his early adolescent years. However, the freshman golfer was involved in several other sports which stayed with him as he grew older. Eventually, Forslund had to choose whether he would pursue golf or soccer after high school.

The Swedish native was torn, but the challenges golf presented appealed to his drive more than what the soccer pitch could provide.

“You can get better every single day,” Forslund said of his choice. “You can never be perfect in golf. I had to choose between soccer and golf which was probably the most challenging thing for me.”

Soccer in foreign parts of the world is extremely competitive, and the sport dominates the country where Forslund calls home making the decision even tougher. Forslund sacrificed his love for soccer to compete in golf at North Texas, which was a combination of factors. One is his want to go to college for school and learning purposes while the other is his thirst to grow as a golf player every day.

“I think college is a great step after high school,” Forslund said. “Four years here, combining education with playing golf, I thought it was the [right] choice for me.”

For Forslund, the adjustment came in adapting to life living so far from his family and living in this foreign country.

“He’s adjusted well since he came over here,” Stracke said. “You never know with a freshman if their going to adjust well living in a dorm. Being so far away, I know he misses his family. He adjusted well and has been a great student in the classroom.”

Stracke was not the only one taking a risk in this situation.

The freshman golfer had no idea what to expect out of college golf in America and had never visited North Texas before attending last fall. Either way, he took the risk with Stracke but it has not been able to slow Forslund down on the course.

“The tournaments they play, the players are so much better than I was used to back in Sweden so i’ve learned a lot,” Forslund said. “When looking at the fields we were playing I would be thinking, ‘They must be so good,’ now that I’ve played with them, of course they’re good but, the fact I know I can beat them, it means a lot.”

Forslund has not only been a dedicated student, but his game since making the move to Denton has continued to grow due to his praised work ethic.

He has been a reliable asset for the Mean Green, always rolling with the five golfers that represent North Texas in every tournament.

And while he is quickly finding his way in America as a student and a golfer, his coach can not wait to continue unlocking his potential on the course.

“He’s been excellent since arriving here, in the classroom and on the course,” Stracke said. “The type of kid we want to recruit here at North Texas.”

The choices of Forslund to play golf and his coach to believe in him are quickly paying off for the Mean Green.

Now that his first year is wrapping up, it is easy for Forslund and his coach to agree that both made the right decision.

“He’s a great kid with a great work ethic, and he’s done excellent for us this year,” Stracke said. “The guys have faith in Victor, and when he tees it up, they know he’s gonna play well, and I do as well.”

Featured image: Courtesy: North Texas Athletics.

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Joshua Paveglio

Joshua Paveglio

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