Golf team finishes disappointing eight at Pac-10 championships
The Arizona men's golf team continued its season-long decline this week by finishing eighth out of 10 teams at the Pacific 10 Conference Championship in Seattle. UA's most recent loss continues a downward spiral in a season that began with high expectations.
UA junior David Bates attributed the season's lack of success to the team's consistently slow starts.
"If we can get off to a good start, there would be no looking back," he said. "We just haven't been able to do that."
Bates said he also believed the slump may be haunting the team's individual scores.
"We've put a lot of pressure on ourselves to get out of this," he said. "And, when you try too hard, you really can't perform that well."
Arizona has been unable to capture any tournament titles this season, averaging a ninth place finish in the 12 tournaments the team has competed in.
The Wildcats have also lacked the low scores they depend on to succeed in the extremely competitive Pac-10.
Junior Derek Gillespie, UA's top player this season, said he is also surprised by the team's season statistics.
"There's not really just an answer to figure out our slump," he said. "We're just not in the right frame of mind. We'll get it together once we get our minds together."
Bates is hoping the Wildcats can change their recent losing streak when they host the NCAA West Regional May 20-22 on their home course, the Omni Tucson National Golf Resort.
"The Tucson National is a great place for us to turn around," Bates said. "Most of us grew up playing on this course and we've got a great attitude to put on a good showing at the NCAAs."
Jensen Karp can be reached at Jensen.Karp@wildcat.arizona.edu.