by Eric Oslund
When the year began, Zimmerman’s boys golf team knew it was going to be a season filled with growing pains.
They lost six seniors from the year prior – five of who consistently played up at the varsity level.
“We’re definitely young and hopefully improving,” said head coach Scott Baldwin. “We had a downer (May 2), but up until yesterday I think we had been on the upswing, but yesterday was kind of a downer up in Becker. But hopefully today, on our home course, we’ll do better.”
The trick for the boys is to just keep working, and making improvements every day. Baldwin said that he is trying to have his players focus on the good shots they have, and forget the bad ones because eventually the bad ones will come by less and less.
Luckily, all the players seem to continue to hold their heads high and persevere through the hardships. Sure, they get a little down when they first see a high number written on their scorecard, but they are able to move on from it quickly and just have fun.
“I think they’re pretty resilient,” Baldwin said. “We laugh a lot. We like to have a lot of fun, so we kind of look at it that way.”
Senior Damien Pearce is a captain this year, and has consistently been one of the top players for the Thunder, though, Baldwin believes he hasn’t come close to playing at the level he is capable of.
Blake Johnson and Brett Howard, a pair of freshman and returning lettermen, are two other players who have been playing well this season. Their head coach believes they both have a lot of potential and just need to be a little more consistent.
It’s often hard for players to look towards the future, but if the Thunder are able to get through this season, the experience they have gained will only make them better.
“I talk a lot about how, ‘Look at how you’re improving this year, and it’s just going to build over the years. A lot of these guys have been playing a lot longer than you have, and if you work at it, continue to work hard, you’re going to see success,’” Baldwin said as a message to his players.