Illinois women’s golf building on Fall season while looking to Spring

By Benjy Sabitt

The Illini women’s golf team brought a sense of excitement to its practice Wednesday — the Illini are working towards improving for the spring season.

Illinois was able to end the fall season on a high note with a top-5 finish in the Palmetto Intercollegiate Tournament. Sophomore Jan Prapassarangkul credited a new mental approach for her third-place individual finish. She said that her success helped her strategize her future play.

“I’m playing more aggressively and it allows me to play more freely and build confidence throughout the tournament,” Prapassarangkul said. “I look forward to taking this approach into next season.”

Head coach Renee Slone agreed with the notion that her players are on the right track heading into the spring season. 

“We started off on a high note,” Slone said. “The middle of the season was a bit of a struggle, but we feel confident after what we were able to do at Palmetto.”

Slone preaches consistency to her team, specifically emphasizing that her players need to be able to “complete three strong rounds this season.” 

Bing Singhsumalee started off her college career with a 6-under 66 at this fall’s Minnesota Invitational. Each golfer has an average team finish, and Singhsumalee leads the group in that regard, averaging a second-place team finish through five tournaments. 

Singhsumalee echoed Slone’s words.

“I’m trying to be more consistent and make sure my scores stay low,” the freshman said. “Because I started fluctuating last season, and I’d like to eliminate that.” 

The golfers enjoyed their breaks and were able to work on things that they don’t normally get to work on during the season. Prapassarangkul went home to Thailand for the duration of her break. 

“I got to go back home and work with my personal coach on swing technique, which isn’t something I like to work on in season,” Prapassarangkul said.

Slone also believed that the break could prove to be extremely beneficial as it gives the Illini an opportunity to work on their consistency across different areas of the game — she hopes that work pays off once the Spring season starts.

Illinois’ coach wants her players to specifically improve on short game this spring. The team starts its season Feb. 13 with the Illinois Challenge, which will take place in Venice, Florida.

“I’ve been preaching to our team that we need to work on our wedges and our putting, and hopefully we can push for some top finishes this season, and make a run come time for the conference tournament,” Coach Slone said. 

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