With spring golf season coming up in a few weeks, both Findlay men’s and women’s teams are finding themselves in a similar situation to the fall season; national rankings. This spring, however, both teams are ranked even higher, with both teams being ranked #2 regionally in the sport. Even with this great achievement, Head Coach Dominic Guarnieri says that there is still work to be done.
“Both teams being nationally ranked after the fall is obviously great for recruiting [and] things like that. Honestly, amongst ourselves, we really don’t talk about it much,” said Guarnieri. “We still have a lot of other things we want to accomplish this spring, and with the spring being our championship season, that’s kind of what we’re looking ahead to.”
With the regular golf season having a five-month gap, it allows the players to fix any problems they may have had and improve on what looked good. Guarnieri is excited for what the season brings
“I think honestly [the team has grown] a lot. We’ve made a lot of improvements off the golf course from the end of fall until now,” Guarnieri commented. “Our spring season starts in less than a month and they just keep getting closer and closer every day and I think that’s going to help us on the golf course. We’ve looked at things we’ve done in the past and previous springs and [we’ve been] changing some things [and] doing some things the same to make sure we perform to the best of our ability in March, April, and May.”
It also allows the players to bond and grow. Guarnieri says that the tight-knit unit of both teams has grown even tighter since the conclusion of the fall season.
“After the fall season is over, towards the middle-end of October, we [the coaching staff] give them a week to take a break, then we do some individual things, [like we] start working out, doing cardio, and things like that,” Guarnieri stated. “We had a really good fall. They were out practicing and playing even after the season. I’ve really been impressed with what I’ve seen from all 15 guys and 6 girls working together. Obviously, it can be tough when you have that many guys on the team because only 5 of them are playing. But, they [both teams] are a really tight-knit unit, they support each other, and I’m really excited to see what we do coming up in March.”
Even with all the good the golf team does, Guarnieri is prouder of how the athletes live their lives. To him, academics come first than golf after that.
“One thing that we talk about a lot as a team, both teams, is we only have one goal, and that is to get closer and better as a team every day,” Guarnieri said. “We [also] have what we call ‘destinations’. One of our ‘destinations’ is always a GPA goal, and our teams’ combined this year had a 3.65 GPA in the fall. That’s something that I really talk to everyone about because not only are we performing on the golf course, but we’re performing in the classroom.”
Guarnieri continued further with this idea and takes it into how he and the rest of the staff build up the program.
“Whenever I recruit kids, I always talk about faith, family, education, and then golf [on what matters]. All are extremely important, but it should be in that order,” said Guarnieri. “That’s how I live my life and I hope to set an example for all these kids that that’s how they should live their life, and I think that’s really important.”
Both teams begin their spring seasons March 14 at the Saginaw Valley St. Spring Invite in Georgetown, KY.