Legendary golfer Bobby Jones once said that golf is played on a five-inch course — that being the distance between your ears.
As Penn men’s golf heads to Ivy League Championships this weekend, the team feels good about that mental course, despite heading to one of the most difficult physical courses on the East Coast.
“We have seen all the teams that we have to go up against, and we feel very confident,” said coach Scott Allen, whose team heads to Galloway National Golf Club in Galloway, N.J., for the 54-hole Ivy League Championships for Day One of the three-day tournament.
The Quakers have had a solid spring season and are looking to cap it off by capturing their first Ivy championship since 2007.
If they want to do so, they are going to have to figure out the difficult Galloway National.
Allen foresees the wind playing a role this weekend.
“Given the course’s location right on the coast, we are expecting it to be very windy,” Allen said. “It is going to test us.”
Junior Scotty Williams, the defending Ivy League Individual Champion has actually played the course before.
“The course is long and it demands a lot,” Williams said of the 7,000-yard course. “You have to know where to hit it and where the misses are. If you can do that, you can put together a solid score.”
But the Quakers do have some advantages going into this weekend.
The course that they played last weekend in the Wolfpack Spring Open is comparable to Galloway National, according to Allen, and Penn was the only Ivy team to play that tourney.
Also, the Quakers have the Galloway National Golf Club course record holder on staff in assistant coach Michael Blodgett.
Blodgett was a part of the Quakers squad in the 2007-08 season, and he took home the Ivy League Individual Championship with the help of his course record, 67.
“Hopefully he is going to tell our guys where to hit it and where not to hit it,” Allen said.
Not only do the Quakers want to come home with a team title but also an individual crown.
But with a team as consistent as Allen’s squad, it is hard to determine the frontrunner. The logical choice would be Williams, the defending champ.
“Anyone on our team, when playing their best, can win the individual championship,” Allen said. “That’s the best part about us.”
“Galloway is going to be a challenge,” he added.
The Quakers think they’re up for it.