Team hopes to ‘improve from last year’

by Jeremy DuBois

The Simpson men’s golf team started their season at the Mount Mercy Invitational on Sept. 9 and is ready to face new challenges for the upcoming season.

Coach Jason Marvelli is now in his fourth year as a head coach of Storm golf. Marvelli, a Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) member, played collegiate golf at Indian Hills Community College and at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. His experience will bring a much-needed boost to the Storm.

The team has practiced hard three times a week at the Indianola Country Club in preparation for the Simpson Invitational. All their effort has been put into improving their game this year in order to improve on last season.

“I expect the majority of the team and myself to improve from last year to this year,” sophomore Tanner Birchmier said.

Senior Grant Northway is playing his last season as a golf player at Simpson. He said that more than golf itself, he will miss the camaraderie he has continuously shared with this teammates throughout his college years.

“It (golf) is the best (sport) to go outside and have a good time with friends,” Northway said. “People should play golf to be humbled.”

Just like the rest of the team, Northway is working hard to reach his goal to finish in the top three in the conference this year.

“I would be happy with winning a tournament or two and our team placing in the top three in conference,” Northway said.

The Simpson College men’s golf program has a promising season ahead. With steady practice and good competition facilities, along with a head coach who is a member of the PGA, the team has the potential to make a mark in the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

Other younger players like sophomore Joe Hupp have set ambitious goals for the 2011 season.

“I hope to get a spot on the varsity team this year,” Hupp said.

One thing that all the players on the team currently have is a passion and love of the game of golf, something that ties the team together and keeps their chemistry strong.

“People should play golf because it’s something that everyone can enjoy together,” Birchmier said. “And you can play it the rest of your life.”

Men’s golf will next play at the Dubuque Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 24.