Men's golf tries to bounce back at Tucker Invitational
When the UA men's golf team talks about what it needs to improve, consistency is what everyone seems to say, and the team will have a chance to find consistency when it tees off on Saturday and Sunday at the William H. Tucker Invitational in Albuquerque, N.M.
The tournament is widely considered one of the most prominent tournaments in the country and is played on the University of New Mexico Championship Golf Course. Started in 1967, it is the second oldest collegiate golf tournament in the country.
""We need our top four guys to really play well,"" said head coach Rick LaRose. ""We have a couple freshmen with us, and we will get them some experience. It will be a good test. We are anxious to see how we do.""
The four-man rotation is led by seniors Tarquin MacManus and Jonathon Khan, but most tournaments need five starters. LaRose is using this tournament to see who will step up and take the fifth spot.
""Tarquin MacManus has been fabulous. He is leading now as a senior, and he is leading by example,"" LaRose said. ""He played so well in Japan, and I need Jonathon Khan to step up a little bit. He is the other senior. We expect him to start playing like he can — and I think he can.""
While MacManus is a leader, you won't hear him hooting and hollering.
""I'm not the type to go out and give a speech to the team,"" MacManus said. ""I like to let my play on the green talk for me.""
The team has not had a tournament for three weeks since its trip to Japan, when it participated in the Topy Cup and placed sixth.
""There can be a little bit (of rust),"" Khan said. ""During the fall we only have four tournaments, so there is a pretty good amount of breaks in between them. We have had some good practices, and the guys have played alright. I think we will work it out in the practice round (today).""
Khan had a shaky performance in Japan, shooting three over par and finishing tied for 30th place.
""I struggled a lot in Japan,"" Khan said. ""I struggled with my drive, and I had a lesson and been practicing. I feel pretty good, so I'm kind of excited for another tournament. I have been waiting for another tournament for a couple weeks to redeem myself, hopefully.""