|Sophmore Golfer Provides Leadership
By Drew DeVries
With age comes experience, so the saying goes. But sophomore Brad Tindall didn’t have much time for the aging.
Calvin’s golf team this year consisted of only two seniors, two sophomores and eight freshmen. As a returnee, Tindall was already thrust into a leadership role, but it was something he was more than ready for. “It was nice to have a leadership role,” he said. “I look forward to more years and seeing how the young talent unfolds. It’s very encouraging to see that.”
Tindall knows a little bit about “unfolding talent” himself. As a freshman he posted a season average of 78.4 strokes per round, which ranks 11th in Calvin men’s golf history and the best average ever for a freshman. He was 15th in the MIAA individual standings. He followed up his strong freshman year with a formidable sophomore season, averaging 78.8 strokes per round, allowing him to finish 19th in the MIAA while helping his team finish fifth for the second straight year.
Despite his strong scores, the MIAA has become more competitive over the past few years. Three of the conference’s teams — Hope, Tri-State and Olivet — were nationally ranked.
“The last five years the scores have dropped. It’s ridiculous,” said Tindall, a native of Vicksburg, Mich. “I mean in a year when [Calvin golfer] Jeff TenBrink has one of the best scoring averages ever at Calvin, he’s only sixth or seventh in the MIAA.”
The tough competition has prompted Tindall to set lofty goals for the future. “Next year I definitely hope to be all-conference and then be top six [in the MIAA] in my senior year,” he said.
He also wants to improve by a stroke and feels his team can be in the top three in the MIAA. “I don’t think we played to our potential. So I really think we can improve and hold one of those top-three spots,” he said.
But he also has goals that don’t have to do with the golf course. Having recently declared a sports management major, Tindall has an idea of what he might want to do but he may not specifically know where those goals will take him.
Ultimately, Tindall can’t wait to get back on the golf course next summer — under better conditions than the team battled through this fall.
“You have to keep in mind that everyone is playing in the same weather,” he said. “It’s hard not to get discouraged because it’s just not fun; you just have to deal with it and persevere through it.” One thing it might do is level the playing field — or golf course — which is something that could play into Calvin’s favor next season as it again faces daunting MIAA competition.As a junior, Tindall will return with plenty of leadership experience and ready to use it on the course.
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