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    Chip Shots with Samantha Sloan
    Illinois' Samantha Sloan is one of seven sophomores on the team this year.

    Illinois' Samantha Sloan is one of seven sophomores on the team this year.

    Sept. 15, 2009

    Go behind the scenes of Illinois women's golf with "Chip Shots", the online golf journal. In the first edition of the new season. sophomore Samantha Sloan talks about the first day back, playing with alumni, and their new freshman.

    Hello, Illini fans, and welcome back to another season of Illinois Women's Golf! On the first day of classes, we got right back into the swing of things and had our first practice. Coach attended a workshop this summer with the Vision 54 team and learned about its philosophy. She has been integrating different parts of that into each of our practices, and we are learning a lot about ourselves and the mental side of the game.

    We have been working hard, and qualifying for our first tournament is already underway. On Saturday, we played 36 holes of qualifying at Stone Creek and when we combined the best four scores in the second round, we shot a 286, which is two under par! This is our first under par round as a team and our best team score ever. It is definitely motivating us to keep up the hard work so that we will turn in scores like this in competition.

    Last weekend, we took a mini road trip up to the North Side of Chicago to play Skokie Country Club with a few of alumni from the University. Mr. Andy Langan, Mr. Tim Ubben, Mr. Ron Schutz, and Mr. Don Manhard were our hosts for the day. They are some of our biggest fans, and we were happy to show our appreciation for their contributions to the school. Special thanks to Skokie Country Club for having us and making it such a wonderful day.

    This year, we welcome a new member to our team, Crystal Smith. She is from Venice, Fla., and is majoring in broadcast journalism. We have been showing her the ropes around campus for the last few weeks. It is a very different experience for her, coming in on her own, considering that there were seven of us last year. We are excited to make her a member of our family and spend the next few years with her.

    On Sept. 19, we will be leaving for our first tournament of the year, the Ron Moore Women's Collegiate hosted by the University of Denver at the Highlands Ranch Golf Course. We are looking forward to playing such a great venue in the mountains of Colorado. It will surely be an experience to remember! Be sure to check back on fightingillini.com for live scoring and complete results from the tournament.

    Go Illini!

    Sammi

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