| March 22, 2018

W. Golf: Strong and Steady

May 5, 2016

Vandal senior Kristin Strankman first heard from the University of Idaho women’s golf team after a strong showing as a junior in high school.

The Richland High School recruit later received a scholarship offer from Idaho head coach Lisa Johnson and accepted the offer because of the school’s short distance from her hometown.

“The town of Moscow is just really quaint and nice,” Strankman said. “It was a great fit.”

She said she enjoys the close-knit comradery of her teammates in addition to the atmosphere of the Moscow community.

“We’re all pretty close because it is a smaller team,” Strankman said. “We hang out all the time.”

Johnson said Strankman developed into one of the team’s leaders and brought the team together during her last year of collegiate competition.

“She’s like, silently competitive,” Johnson said. “You don’t realize how competitive of a person she is, but she’s really bought into what I’ve done here as a coach. She’s worked extremely hard and improved a great deal over the last four years.”

Strankman said her competitive psyche has improved drastically during her time with the program.

“When it comes to just the mental aspect of golf, I’ve grown leaps and bounds,” Strankman said.

Johnson said Strankman was initially critical of her own play when she joined the team, but as she developed she began to learn to search for the positives.

“She’s not trying to make things happen so much,” Johnson said. “She’s been in the present more, and just letting things come as they come and manage each individual shot at a time.”

Johnson said she also noticed an increased focus from Strankman during practices and tournament play.

“She’s able to translate that into competition,” Johnson said. “She’s been able to be very focused when she’s ready to hit a shot, but then after the shot is over she can relax and talk and kind of clear her mind until she gets to the next shot.”

As her time as a Vandal comes to an end, Strankman said she will take with her all of the memories that she has made with teammates and friends throughout the years.

“Four years is a long time,” she said. “I’m way different now than I was when I first came here as a freshman.”

Mihaela Karst can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu

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