It was a special night for the Heat men’s golf team along with the schools women’s cross-country team last Friday night as three separate banners were hung in the rafters of the UBC Okanagan gym.
After a national championship in the fall of 2016, the women’s cross-country team followed that up with a bronze medal performance in Quebec this past fall.
Along with the bronze medal banner, Veronika Fagan received a banner of her own for winning the national championship as an individual. The third year nursing student became the first cross-country runner from the Heat program to win an individual national title.
The other members of the travel team for the national championship were Camille Galloway, Julianna Neudorf, Alex Beswick, Rachel Garrett and Josie Storey.
After the departure of former head coach Colin Wallace, John Machuga would step in to lead the team this season and their was no drop-off. Machuga came into the program highly accomplished, as he has coached provincial champions in multiple difference age groups and disciplines.
After nearly not having a team this season, the Heat men’s golf team would fight through adversity and finish as provincial and national silver medalists in what was the programs best season ever.
After winning their home tournament the first weekend, the Heat would finish second to the UFV Cascades in the next three tournaments to fall just short of a provincial title.
Heading to nationals with a ton of confidence, the team would trail by just two shots heading into the final day to the Cascades once again. The team was not able to must a final round comeback however and would finish in silver medal position.
Fifth year management student James Casorso would be the veteran and team leader of the team throughout the season, as he was named a conference all-star and would finish second individually at the national championship in Oshawa.
The other four players who were part of the travel team were Oliver Rizun, Casey Sullivan, Nik Federko and Ryley Johnson.
Arguably the most important member of the team didn’t hit a shot all season, as head coach Cass Hritzuk would be named PACWEST coach of the year and was a finalist for national coach of the year. Hritzuk’s calm demeanor and knowledge of the game would be an integral part to the teams success throughout the season.