Player Diary: California's Max Homa (Part 3)
We are back from Oregon and brought some more hardware with us.
This past week was the first ever Pac-12 Preview, which took place at the historic Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club. (This is where Tiger Woods won his third consecutive U.S. Amateur championship in 1996.)
The course was pristine and, to be honest, quite unusual for Oregon because it played firm and fast. We got extremely lucky with the weather all week. I didn’t think it was possible to stay dry for four days in the Pacific Northwest, but I guess there’s a first time for everything. The good weather brought great scores, but a slow start put the Golden Bears in last place through our first 9 holes. As you can imagine, that wasn’t exactly what we had envisioned.
However, the remainder of the 36-hole day was pretty flawless. It was so good, in fact, that we didn’t count junior Joel Stalter’s even-par round in the afternoon. The big bounce-back gave us a one-shot lead going into the final round.
The team kept riding the momentum and we fortunately pulled out another victory. Stalter, unhappy about his round not counting the day before, led the way with a 5-under-par 67. I’m sure he had a few fist-pumps out there. This week was great for us because adversity tends to build character, and after that bad start all of us, we had to decide whether we were going to roll over or fight harder. Fortunately, we chose the latter and are now better prepared for the trials and tribulations the rest of the season will bring.
We are now home and everyone is frantically catching up with school and midterms before our home tournament, The Alister Mackenzie Invitational, on Monday. Cal will be going for its fourth straight victory at the event and our fourth win in a row this season. We are going to get a few good workouts in beforehand to stay fresh for the next couple of weeks. We can’t wait to get out there and feel the support from our friends and families. Hopefully I will be back with some more good news next week.