By Mallory Allen, Mara Allen, Lindsey Gloede & Abbi Pflum
The University of Wisconsin – Green Bay Women’s Golf team is teeing up to have another successful Horizon League tournament showing after a strong start to the spring portion of their season.
The Phoenix was set up for success coming into the 2022-2023 season as they came off a second-place finish at the Horizon League tournament the previous year. Six of the seven players on the roster for Green Bay this season were a part of the 2021-2022 team.
Having a veteran squad has been paying off for the Phoenix in terms of the team mindset shift from fall to spring. With five years of UWGB Golf Team experience under her belt, graduate student Isabelle Maleki is no stranger to competing as a Phoenix. Maleki commented on her mindset shift from the fall to the spring season, stating, “[M]y mindset for fall was not great, and it showed in my performance. The whole team motto this spring is to ‘just have fun,’ and this way of thinking has really helped our performance.”
Freshman Ellie Frisch has also found her stride, being the only newcomer to the Green Bay greens, and has been soaking in all the wisdom she can from her upperclassmen teammates. “I was hoping to learn from [the upperclassmen] so that I can be as successful as them when I am a senior. The older girls are inclusive and inspiring,” said Frisch.
Working as a team is a key component to competing well, but so is competing under good leadership. Maleki and Frisch both commented on being unsure about wanting to play golf in college but how head coach Lee Reinke and his character solidified their wishes to compete at the collegiate level.
“During my [recruitment] meeting, my parents and I immediately knew how compassionate and how much [Coach Reinke] cared for the golf team,” shared Maleki. Frisch stated that she could see “Coach Reinke was focused on building a solid program that was able to succeed, and [she] wanted to be a part of that.”
Reinke is proud of the culture of GB Golf that he has built and how the women play an individual sport as a team, saying, “[the women] are a very mature group and realize [having fun and enjoying the moment will allow what is meant to be to take care of itself], clearing the mind and being able to enjoy the moment isn’t always easy.”
Green Bay stayed lowkey for the fall portion of the collegiate golf season, scoring middle of the pack at three of five of the invitationals they competed at. Maleki stated that the team’s mindset changed looking ahead to the spring season, and in order to keep the momentum of recent successes going into the Horizon League tournament, the Phoenix must “continue to not put pressure on ourselves and remember that whatever is supposed to happen will happen.”
The Phoenix has come out on top of half (two of four) of the tournaments they competed in this spring season. At the time this story was published, the Phoenix were competing for the Championship title at the Horizon League tournament in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida.
Live stats from the event and a recap following awards can be found on GreenBayPhoenix.com.