December 7, 2010

Matador Minute with Women's Golf Coach Bonnie Murphy

Dec. 7, 2010

What are your thoughts on your recently completed fall season?
"We got the win at one of the Cal Poly tournaments, so that was very nice. We would have liked to place better at our second showing there, but we were missing a few of our top players, including Ashlee Nagamine, the tournament's defending champion. We also played well in our first showing at a tournament on the campus of New Mexico State. We finished eighth out of 14 teams in a very strong field."

Can you talk about the play of Kylie Kimura during the fall?
"I was so happy for her to come back and play so well. She had a hard time sitting out a year, but we told her to stick with it and she kept practicing. That determination manifested itself when she won the Big West Conference Player of the Month for October after winning the Cal Poly Firestone Grill Invitational (Oct. 4-5) at Monarch Dunes G.C. with a three-round score of (+8) 221. She also had a phenomenal summer and we're expecting some great production from her in the spring season."

What's your impression been of the team's other two newcomers, Jennel Alexander and Ellen Krausse?
"Ellen played very well for us in the fall season. She has a great demeanor out on the course and can quickly shake off a bad hole or shot. That quality makes her very coachable and she's just able to get out there and grind. Jennell brings a lot of positive energy to the course. She's also very coachable and someone we expect to compete well in the spring."

How are some of your alumni doing in the professional ranks?
"Well, Lucy Davies just finished up playing an LPGA qualifying tournament in Spain. Although she didn't make the cut, I think the experience and exposure to different cultures was wonderful for her. Beth Allen is currently playing on the European Tour while Emma Wahlgren is an assistant professional at Dove Canyon, a country club in Orange County, so we get to see her when we play at UC Irvine.

If you could play any course in the world, which would you choose?
"I'd have to pick the Old Course at St. Andrew's. I am a big fan of the British Open and all the history surrounding that venue would make it an exciting round. Even if the course and weather are known to bring golfers to their knees."

What are your favorite major tournaments to watch during the year?
"I really enjoy watching the US Open for both the men and women. The courses are always very tough and tricked out to make things exciting. The rough is extra long, the greens play extra fast and the cream usually rises to the top at the event."

What are your goals for the spring 2011 season?
"We are going to play five tournaments and overall, I'd like our team to be more mentally prepared to compete. In the fall, we tended to have tough first rounds and were forced to play catch-up for the rest of the tournament. If we can go out and shoot a better score in the opening rounds of our competitions, I think we will find ourselves placed in much better situations."

Did you have a favorite player growing up?
"I used to love watching Jack Nicklaus and Nancy Lopes growing up. Both of them brought a tenacity and determination that made them fun to root for. My whole family enjoys the game of golf and we all have our favorites, but the "Golden Bear" and Nancy Lopes were mine."

Finally, if you could play a round with any foursome of players, whom would you choose?
"Well, first and foremost would be our new assistant baseball coach, Tim Leary. Aside from Coach Leary, I'd go with Cristie Kerr and Paula Creamer. I really look up to Cristie and love watching her play. She's a tough player who always finishes strong. As for Paula, she always has a great attitude on the course. She always smiles and always seems like she's having fun."

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