Golf team introduces new indoor training facility

Clara Kuerschner, Sports Reporter

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Winona State University golf teams have a new indoor training facility this year in Memorial Hall that replaced one of the four racquet ball courts. The men’s team kicked off their tournament season in Bemidji, Minn. in September and the girls started in Olathe, Kans. a week earlier. Their fall seasons will be wrapping up by the end of October, but their practice season will continue through the winter so they can be prepared for their spring tournaments. The indoor training center will give the team the chance to improve their practice ability while snow is on the ground.

This training facility is designed to improve players’ game and provide a warm place to play during winter. It includes a small putting green with sloped terrain, two driving tees, a game simulator and direct internet access. These amenities will help the coaches and players get a feel for what a real course will feel like while practicing.

The driving tees will be equipped with GCQuad technology from Foresight Sports.  This allows the player to get immediate feedback about where the ball and the club make contact, how hard the ball was hit, how far the ball will go, and at what angle the ball was hit. The GCQuad is also portable, so the teams can bring it indoors or outdoors and use it during almost any type of weather.

The facility will also have a game simulator which allows a player to play a real game from the comfort of the training facility. It creates a true-to-life simulation of golf courses around the world. This state of the art technology will increase the coaches and players’ ability to assess technique and perfect their stroke.

As well as improving their game, the players plan to host small clinics for groups in the Winona community.  They want to bring in Big Brothers and Big Sisters, junior golfers and Pi Sigma Epsilon, a co-ed business fraternity.  The golf teams want to teach these students and community members the basics of golf.

“Golf is a sport of business,” said the men’s head coach, Jeff Straight. Straight’s wife Xenia is the women’s golf head coach.

The indoor golf training center is now open only for the use of the golf teams and select physical education classes, but will be used as a recruitment tool for future Warriors. The training facility may look empty today, but the coaches plan on cleaning up the walls and filling them with lockers for golf clubs, televisions for the simulators, stickers and posters from their donors and other golf related memorabilia.

The golf teams will call this new training center their home while they continue to work hard this season to improve their swing and hopefully get a few strokes off their game.