The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

WSU men’s golf prepares for season opener in Hawaii

After a succesful fall, the golf team is back

Golf. It’s perceived by many to be a boring sport. A sport for retired grandpas who have too much free time… Not according to Senior Prestin Bebich.

“The best part about golf? Just going out there and playing it,” Bebich said.

WSU men’s golf team is about to get their first chance of the year to do just that, as they prepare for the John Burns Intercollegiate Open, hosted by University of Hawaii, and played at the Ocean Course at Hokuola. Having not played competitive collegiate tournaments since October 2023, it has been a while since the team has been in action together.

Golf joins several Olympic D-I sports with competitions in the fall and spring, with a few months of break in between.

“It’s a good break, where you get to reflect and work on things that weren’t going your way,” said senior Pono Yanagi.

“The guys do a good job (in the offseason),” said head coach Dustin White. “They work with coaches in the indoor facility….compete in independent tournaments, putting together a plan.”

The team resumes play, Thursday and will hope to follow up on what was a very successful fall. They finished third place out of 17 at the Stockton Pacific Invitational, second out of 14 at the Oregon State Invitational, and fifth of 17 at the Colorado Invitational.

“We all would’ve preferred to keep playing,” White said. “But excited for the spring, and hoping we’ll make it to get to play golf in May.”

Playing golf in May, after the regular season ends and postseason play begins, is a goal the team thinks they can achieve. But as players, seniors Bebich and Yanagi have other goals as well.

“For me, I’m trying to compete as hard as I can,” Bebich said. “Trying to take advantage and just enjoy it. It goes by super quick….so just slowing it down and enjoying it.”

Yanagi had similar thoughts, as he prepares for what will be his final season at WSU.

“Play with no regrets. We worked hard to be where we are as (D-I) athletes,” Yanagi said. “It’s a never-ending work in progress.”

For Yanagi and Bebich, the process will conclude at year’s end. But right now their sights are set on the upcoming tournaments.

After Hawaii, they head to La Quinta, California for The Prestige Open, after just a day of rest. The rest of their schedule includes tournaments at Grand Canyon University, Stanford, & Arizona State University.

They wrap up the season with the Pac-12 Championships in late April, and depending on their success, they hope to be chosen as one of the 30 teams that will compete at the NCAA golf championships in late May.

Whether or not the team reaches the championships, it is sure to be an exciting season for a team that can not wait to get back on the greens. White made clear that while he hopes for success, he doesn’t want to hold the team to any kind of high expectations.

“Golf is such a unique sport…it’s a way to play with your friends and have a good time,” White said.

That is what the team will focus most on this season—bonding with each other and playing to their best efforts. Win or lose, the season will be a success as long as they can have personal and team enjoyment of the great sport of golf.

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About the Contributor
Levi is a sophomore broadcast news major from Tacoma, Washington. He loves the Seahawks, Mariners, Kraken and of course the Cougs.