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Kirkwood golf ranks ninth in nation

Coach attributes success to players

By Ziadah Ziad and Faiz Faiz
On April 20, 2016

The Kirkwood Community College Men’s Golf Team has ranked in the top ten nationally for more than five years and this season they are currently ranked ninth. 

Darin Pint, head golf coach, explained that the team is able to stay in the top ten because they want to continually improve and golf is their passion. “Ranking can be misleading because we don’t get to play the teams ahead of us in the matches. We take it and we’re happy with it but it is not what really drives us,” he said.

Pint explained that the team practices regularly Monday through Friday and it includes both indoor and outdoor exercises. He said during the winter the team mostly does indoor practice which covers lifting, running and other physical exercise.  In nicer weather the team usually practices at its home course Hunter’s Ridge Golf Course in Marion or at the Airport National Public Golf Course and Range near campus, he added. 

“We start practice in August until we get done with the national tournament. We basically do something everyday unless we have a weekend off or Sunday off,” said Pint. “The guys, they want to get better and we feel fortunate that we don’t have to pull teeth and drag them out to the golf course. They want to be out there.” 

According to Pint, another factor that makes the Kirkwood team strong is the recruitment process. He said players they recruit not only have golf skills but also good manners and the ability to work well with other teammates. 

One team member recruited to play for Kirkwood is Charlie Hartwig from Australia. He said, “The golf courses are a lot different. The thought of the players over here is a lot different compare to back in Australia. There are a few things that I have to change but all in all I think I’ve done the transition pretty well.” 

In recruiting players Pint said he uses a website for recruiting services and global connections that allow him to find international players who meet Kirkwood’s criteria. 

For recruiting local or national players, Pint said he prefers to watch them play and meet them in person.

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