North Texas Daily

Women’s golf teeing off fall campaign with high expectations

Women’s golf teeing off fall campaign with high expectations

Women’s golf teeing off fall campaign with high expectations
September 24
14:50 2022

Women’s golf is eyeing a third-straight Conference USA championship as it begins its fall slate of tournaments.

After winning back-to-back Conference USA titles, North Texas starts its quest for a three-peat at the Texas A&M University “Mo” Morial. The tournament is the first of four this fall and will take place in Bryan, Texas on Sept. 20-21.

“This year, not only do we want to get back to regionals, but we want to advance to the national championship in Arizona,” head coach Michael Akers said. “That is our goal and that is what we’ve been talking about.”

Akers, the 2021 Conference USA Coach of the Year, is looking to continue his success since taking over the program in 2016. Senior golfer Emilie Ricaud said it is the small adjustments he makes that make a difference to the team.

“We are all different players and he understands that,” Ricaud said. “So, he makes sure that we’re all working on different things to get better.”

Graduate golfers Audrey Tan and Patricia Sinolungan are starting their final year at North Texas. With two consecutive All-C-USA first-team honors, Tan is expected to once again lead the Mean Green in performance. Concurrent to Tan’s run of form, Sinolungan made the All-C-USA third-team in 2021 and tied for sixth in her professional debut at the Simone Asia Pacific Cup.

Akers said Sinolungan and Tan are two of the best recruits he has landed at the university.

“Those two coming back is absolutely huge,” Akers said. “They’re in their fifth year [and] they both have an incredible worth ethic — from day one they have worked hard and I [have] probably never had a better recruiting class in my career than those two.”

The North Texas Woman’s Golf team practices as Assistant Coach Brenda Gonzalez watches on Sept. 15, 2022. Photo by Marco Barrera

After five years at the university, Tan’s decorated time at North Texas has run out of eligibility. While her focus is still on playing, she said that she does think about her impending departure from the team.

“Honestly, I’m just very grateful and my goal is to have fun playing all the time,” Tan said. “But it’s even more evident in this last year as I’m very aware of the fact that my time here is coming to an end.”

In 2021, the Mean Green finished 10th at the Albuquerque Regional to finish their season. With several key players returning, the team is bringing experience into this season. Ricaud said the team wants to win a national championship for Sinolungan and Tan’s final season.

“So why not go to nationals,” Ricaud said. “Because I know it’s the last year for Audrey and Patty, it would be a really good end of their college careers.”

The rest of the roster contains two freshmen, two sophomores, two juniors and one senior. Akers said every player on the team is different from one another and he focuses on how to coach them individually.

“I think the key is to just find out how they tick and knowing when to maybe change equipment, add a driver or changing a golf ball,” Akers said.

After finishing their first tournament on Sept. 21, the Mean Green have a quick turnaround and will play at the Oklahoma University Schooner Fall Classic starting on Sept. 24.

Featured Image: A North Texas Woman’s Golf player hits the ball during practice on Sept. 15, 2022. Photo by Marco Barrera

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Dylan Fredericks

Dylan Fredericks

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