Powers looking forward to playing in Classic (07-17-13)
Written by JACK CARLE Sentinel Sports Editor
Wednesday, 17 July 2013 07:48
SYLVANIA - Caroline Powers has been caught in a whirlwind since deciding less than two months ago to make professional golf her career.
|Caroline Powers hits practice shots on the driving range. (Photo: J.D. Pooley/Sentinel-Tribune)
A graduate of Bowling Green High School, Powers was one of the top collegiate golfers in the nation during her four years at Michigan State.
She has earned her degree and now only reads for fun, while trying to grind things out on the golf course.
Powers is in the area this week, competing in the Marathon Classic at Highland Meadows Golf Club. Play starts Thursday, but as of Tuesday afternoon Powers had not been informed of her tee time.
''I had a couple of weeks right when our season (MSU's) was over, which was nice to catch my breath, do some laundry and pack the car up,'' Powers said. ''I have pretty much been on the road since then. Luckily I can live out of my car and that works out just fine.
''It's been nice not to have anything else to worry about.''
Powers has played in two Symetra Tour events, earning a check both times. The Symetra Tour is billed as the road to the LPGA and it allows golfers to earn experience and some money.
''Once I had status on the Symetra Tour from the collegiate rankings, I didn't see any reason to stay an amateur,'' Powers said. ''If I am going to be playing in all the same tournaments, I might as well try to make a check along the way.''
She added that the summer schedule has made her realize that playing golf is now her job. It's also helping her get ready for qualifying school as Powers hopes to earn full-time status on the LPGA Tour.
Power qualified for the U.S. Women's Open Championship as an amateur, but competed in the event as a professional.
''When I first got there, it was very odd to me that I was being treated so nicely. I wasn't necessarily used to having it be so nice and everything,'' Powers said about the U.S. Open experience. She shot 73 in her first round and an 80 in the second round and missed the cut.
''The first day I felt I didn't belong. But once I played in the practice rounds I thought I belonged out there,'' she said. ''It was nice and I can definitely get used to it.''
Now it's a return to Northwest Ohio for Powers, to play in a tournament where she used to be a score runner.
Powers got into the Marathon Classic on a sponsor exemption and hopes to make the most of the experience.
''It will be fun. I have been out here so many years watching it and seeing how they play the course. I always wanted to be on the other side of the ropes and playing it myself and see how I can stack up in the same conditions,'' Powers said. ''I am looking forward to this year that it's actually happening.''
Powers added that she was able to play the course several times in previous years, the day after the tournament ended.
The Marathon Classic is Powers' final LPGA event of the year.
She has a few more tournaments on the Symetra Tour and is also playing in some state opens.
Then it's on to qualifying school in an effort to earn a tour card.
''Golf, week in and week out, is a tricky game,'' she said. ''Sometimes you feel invincible and other times it's a little harder than that.''
Powers is concentrating on minimizing her mistakes and learning new shots while fine-tuning her game.
''I have really been trying to work on my sand shots,'' Powers said. ''Most of the girls out here are getting up and down out of the sand every time, and that's kind of been a weakness of mine for a while.
''(Also) my wedges. Anytime there is a par-5 you should be making birdies, so that's what I'm trying to hone in on.''
One major perk this week for Powers was the opportunity to play in a pro-am at historical Inverness Club on Tuesday.
''I had never been there, but I had heard nothing but good things about it. I was really looking forward to it,'' Powers said. ''It was everything I had heard it would be; it's green and beautiful and the greens were rolling well ... We had a good time.''
Powers has acquired two sponsors so far in her young career - Thayer Family Dealerships in Bowling Green and Quantum, which helps with her apparel.
"They have really helped me get off the ground and help my dream come true,'' Powers said.
Powers to have support of family and friends
SYLVANIA — What’s a little more pressure?
If it wasn’t nerve-wracking enough for a young golfer playing in only her fourth professional tournament, Caroline Powers will have plenty of people watching her this week at the Marathon Classic at Highland Meadows Golf Club.
Powers is a graduate of Bowling Green High and recently finished her college career and earned her degree from Michigan State University.
She is now learning the ropes of professional golf, but this week she will be supported like a veteran.
‘‘It’s kind of uncharted territory right now. It’s going to be fun to have their support and to be out here, watching what I do now,’’ Powers said. ‘‘I’m really looking forward to it.
‘‘I can’t say I’m nervous now, but it will probably be a difference come Thursday morning.’’
Among those expected to be at Highland Meadows are her mother and father, Buddy and Lindy, and older siblings John and Barbara.
‘‘Any question I have it doesn’t go unanswered. That’s nice to have,’’ Caroline said about the support of her family.
Buddy Powers is the former head hockey coach at Bowling Green State University and is currently an assistant coach at Boston University.
Lindy Powers was previously the director at BGSU’s Forrest Creason Golf Course. She is now a teaching professional at a course near Boston.
John Powers was an All-Ohio golfer and also played hockey at BGHS and played golf collegiately at BGSU. He is currently the head men’s golf coach at St. Bonaventure.
Barbara Powers was an All-Ohio runner for BGHS and competed at BGSU. She is the director of operations for the men’s and women’s track teams at the University of Tennessee.
During Tuesday’s pro-am at Inverness Club, Barbara was Caroline’s caddy, joining her parents and her brother as immediate family members who have caddied for her.
Caroline’s first cousin is Nick Myers, who is the PGA head professional at Highland Meadows.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 17 July 2013 08:12