Golf photo

Then a sophomore, Kent State's Gisli Sveinbergsson tees off on the 16th hole at the Mid-American Conference championship in Nashport, OH. The Flashes won the conference, while Sveinbergsson won golfer of the year. [FILE]

Both the Kent State men’s and women’s golf teams entered the season with optimism and high expectations.

Two Mid-American Conference championships later, both teams found themselves in regional play.

Women's coach Greg Robertson said the Flashes are ready to go.

“They have played well and worked hard,” Robertson said. “If they play up to their capabilities, we can compete with anyone. However, any team can say that at this point. It’s all about going out there and playing relaxed golf.”

He also said despite the high level of play as of late, Kent State is always looking to improve.

“We’re always trying to get better at our short game,” Robertson said. “Any player that plays on a high level focuses mainly on that, and we will do the same.”

Robertson mentioned while this tournament will not have the strongest field, the team has to concentrate on what it does and not what everyone else does.

“I think the Auburn tournament was the hardest,” he said. “But we have to prepare and worry about ourselves and not what the competition is. You can’t wrap yourself up thinking about outside factors.”

Coach Herb Page is very happy the men's team got a regional bid despite having a up-and-down year.

“I couldn’t be happier,” Page said. “To be 12 down and fight back like we did and be co-MAC champions is incredible. We never give up.”

Page said despite being a lower seed, it doesn’t bother him.

“No one expected us to get in,” he said. “Consider it an upset. At 8 a.m. in Pullman, Washington, everybody is even.”

Page mentioned collegiate golf is a team effort.

“At this level, you have to have everyone in it,” he said. “It’s a team effort. They are great young men, and we may have had an up-and-down year, but a Kent State team always plays better in the end.

“We don’t make excuses. No one is going to quit, and we are going to keep grinding. If we do that, we’ll be fine. These guys can perform like I know they can.”

The women’s team has the number three seed and will play in East Lansing, Michigan, May 6 through May 8.

The men’s team gas the number 11 seed and will play in Pullman, Washington, May 13 through May 15.

Zachary McKnight is a sports reporter. Contact him at zmcknigh@kent.edu.

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