Unruh’s mental game will be stronger in return trip to state
Winning medalist honors in the Class 3A regional tournament, Justin Unruh will be competing in the state golf tournament on Monday at Seneca.
By Rod Haxton, editor
When evaluating the difference in his golf game this year compared to a year ago, Justin Unruh says there’s no doubt that his mental approach has improved significantly.
“I don’t let a bad shot get into my head like it used to,” says the spring graduate of Scott Community High School. “I’m able to put that behind me and think about the next shot.”
That mental toughness was instrumental in earning Unruh first place medalist honors at the Class 3A regional tournament held on Monday at the Cimarron Country Club. Unruh, who fired a three-over-par 75, will be joined by teammate Marshal Hutchins who also qualified as a medalist for the state tournament to be held at Seneca on Monday.
Hutchins, a sophomore, carded an 83 and won the first hole of a playoff for sixth place.
Unruh led throughout the day with rounds of 36-39--75, finishing one stroke ahead of Hays-TMP’s Kade Megaffin. The SCHS senior had a one stroke lead after the first round, but got off to a shaky start with a double bogey on the first hole of the second round.
That’s where his mental toughness was evident.
“Last year I would have let that stick with me and maybe let it affect the rest of my round,” Unruh says. “But I was able to put one bad hole behind me and regroup.”
He followed with three pars and his second birdie of the day on the par five fifth hole. He bogeyed two of his final four holes to give Megaffin a chance at medalist honors. When the TMP golfer chipped in for a birdie on the final hole, Unruh thought that may have been enough for Megaffin to take the lead, even after he tapped in for his par.
“I really wasn’t paying attention to his score. I was pretty focused on my game,” says Unruh. “I was pretty relieved when he told me that I’d beaten him by a stroke.”
Hutchins has continued to improve his game throughout the season, earning his first trip to state. He got off to a strong start with a 39 on the front nine and came back with a 44.
“I’m striking the ball a lot better,” says the sophomore. “The difference has been my drives. I’m getting more distance and my accuracy has improved.”
Hutchins felt the turning point of his season was the Scott City Invitational when he fired a season best 82.
“I gained a lot of confidence,” he says.
It’s been a somewhat up-and-down year for both golfers, largely due to the unusual spring weather.
“It’s been hard to find any consistency,” Unruh says. “I was a little worried coming into regional because I was coming off two bad tournaments, but I just told myself to have fun at Cimarron and it seemed to work.”
He plans to take that same approach at state.
“I’m going to focus on my game and have a good time. If I can do that, I think I should have a pretty good tournament,” he adds.
No User Comments
Be the first to comment on this story.
Sports This Week
- Griffith wins third GWAC title - May. 16, 2013
- Unruh’s mental game will be stronger in return trip to state - May. 16, 2013
- Nickel moves into 100m hurdle contention for regional - May. 9, 2013
- Beavers drop 12 inning marathon at Hugoton - May. 9, 2013
- Wells begins finding his form with javelin PR - May. 2, 2013
- Timely hitting wins opener against Colby - May. 2, 2013
- 4x800 relay has higher goals after Holcomb win - Apr. 25, 2013
- SC may have right combination for post-season - Apr. 25, 2013