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Snyman’s redemption season leads men’s golf through spring

Snyman’s redemption season leads men’s golf through spring

March 22
19:38 2018

Junior Ian Snyman received his second straight nod for Conference USA men’s Golfer of the Week award on March 7.

This follows a week by Snyman in which he tied for second at the N.I.T. in Tucson, Arizona in addition to finishing fourth at the All-American Intercollegiate on Feb. 16-18.

It has felt like an eternity to Snyman and his team, but their junior leader is finally back from a fall season where he was hampered with a sore muscle in the ribs, forcing him to take time off and focus on rehabilitation to get back into the game.

The result has been dominant outings so far this spring.

“Ian is healthy for this spring season, [after] he was hurt the whole fall,” head coach Brad Stracke said. “We expect this out of Ian.”

This is his fourth C-USA Golfer of the Week award, however this is his first time receiving the award back-to-back weeks.

As Snyman continues to grow his game after facing injury, he credits his recovery and his ability to elevate his game to his time off.

“I had time off during the winter break in Bellville, South Africa, so I had perfect weather, I could practice, and I got well rested,” Snyman said. “I think it helped me look forward to every tournament.”

Snyman shot one under par in the John Hayt Collegiate Classic and finished twentieth in a field that included six of the top 50 schools in the country.

His game as a whole came together at the right time for this team, but he still strives for improvement every day in all areas, even his strengths.

“Putting tends to be one of my best strengths, and I’m loving it,” Snyman said. “Putting can save you big time. I’m going to keep working on it, and it’s always fun making a lot of putts.”

Snyman’s time in Bellville and the off-season seemed to make a difference for the South African native. It provided the junior with plenty of time to work on his shots, specifically his range game.

“I tried spending most of my time hitting [range shots] and getting myself to the next level,” Snyman said. “Getting a little more distance, hitting it higher is vital for me since I’m probably one of the shortest on the team.”

Despite the height disadvantage, Snyman has emerged as the leader of the Mean Green squad and is also ranked No. 82 in the nation. Nothing has slowed down Snyman’s progress thus far in this spring season as he has matched his career high twice, shooting a 67 on two occasions.

Snyman’s work off the course and throughout the off-season has proven to be a game changer for himself as he continues to be a game changing factor for the entire team. His teammates credit his work ethic for the early success this season.

“Ian’s work ethic is very good,” freshman Viktor Forslund said. “He works hard at practice, has a good attitude and I’m never surprised by his results.”

Snyman has helped elevate the team’s success as well. In the N.I.T. on Feb. 25 and 26, the junior put up 16 birdies to only 2 boogies leading to North Texas to fourth against five top-50 teams on the field.

Snyman’s contributions to the team have been present on the course and elevating the Mean Green’s success, however, he has also been a pivotal player for the team off the course as a primary motivator for his teammates.

“He’s been an anchor for our team these last few tournaments, and that helps to motivate us to catch him, of course,” Forslund said. “He motivates me and inspires us to be as good as him.”

While inspiring those around him, Snyman has been hard at work to surpass where he was before the injury in the fall that kept him sidelined.

As he continues to add shots to his repertoire, his coach knows he has the potential to climb even higher than his current No. 82 position in the country.

“This is how he can perform,” Stracke said. “He is a really good player. We worked with him on his long game and he’s improved and ready to fire.”

Featured image: Ian Snyman. Courtesy: North Texas Athletics.

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Joshua Paveglio

Joshua Paveglio

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