SEASON REVIEW: Golf Sees Growth Under New Coach

Olyvia Longacre went out on a high note. (photo by Scott Eyre)
Olyvia Longacre went out on a high note. (photo by Scott Eyre)

The EMU golf teams showed great promise in their first season under former player Andre Swartzentruber.

On the men's side, junior Ben Shenk (Elkton, Va./Page County) shaved four strokes off his scoring average from the previous year. For the women, Olyvia Longacre (Telford, Pa./Dock Mennonite Academy) wrapped up her career with her best season, including a pair of top-3 finishes.

Over Spring Break, the Royals headed to North Carolina and played three rounds in the Pinehurst area. They also visiting the famous Pinehurst #2 course and clubhouse. Combined with the new simulator housed on EMU's campus, the golfers looked poised for a big spring before being shut down by COVID-19.

ODAC finish: n/a
Coach:
 Andre Swartzentruber (1st season) – member of EMU's first-ever golf team during his senior collegiate year in 2012-13
Coach Swartzentruber Comments:
I thought the men had a good season gaining more experience in a competitive atmosphere against some top-notch golfers and teams. With everyone returning this upcoming year with one more year of experience under their belt, I believe we are ready to take the next step forward in building this program to where it needs to be.

And Olyvia had a great season with three top-10 finishes; including a 2nd place finish and a 3rd place finish. She always represented herself and EMU extremely well, and her competitors always respected and enjoyed playing with her. I have no doubt she will be a great success with whatever she does now that she has graduated and hopes to become a school teacher.

Awards:
Men
Ben Shenk – Royals Athlete of the Week
Women
Olyvia Longacre - All-ODAC Third Team

Season Highlights:
Men

Ben Shenk 81.6 scoring average (career low) was four strokes better than what he had in 2018-19…shot EMU's low round of 76 at the VSGA Intercollegiate on Oct. 15
Troy Hodge playing in his first season as a senior, Hodge's 84.7 scoring average was No. 2 on the team…shot a career best 78 at the Ted Keller Memorial on Sept. 22

Women
Olyvia Longacre
84.8 scoring average was the best of her career and No. 10 in the ODAC…finished 2nd at the Knights Invitational on Sept. 2…finished 3rd at the RMC Invitational on Sept. 28-29