|Friday, September 29, 2000||
Volume 66, Issue 29
UH remains undefeated in the C-USA
|Sanders adds to
Cougar legend, prepares for PGA
By Tom Carpenter
Cougar golfer Andy Sanders has won almost every award a collegiate golfer can win. The son of professional golfer Doug Sanders began his career at UH by being named the Conference USA Freshman of the Year in the 1997-98 season.
The kinesiology major left the Midwest, where he graduated from Turpin High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, and came to Houston because of the UH golf program.
"Coming to UH was probably the best thing for me," Sanders said. "I came here to get better at golf."
Sanders said Cougar golf head coach Mike Dirks has done an excellent job of teaching him about the mental aspect of playing golf.
"I've improved so much in these four years," Sanders said. "Coach Dirks has helped me tremendously. I had the talent, but I didn't know how to play the game."
Sanders was named a second-team All-American his sophomore and junior seasons, and was named a preseason first-team All-American this year.
The senior from Merritt Island, Fla., is honing his skills in this, his final year at the University, to prepare for the leap to the Professional Golfers' Association.
Sanders was a quarterfinalist in the 1999 U.S. Amateur Tournament. He is the two-time defending Conference USA champion.
In '99, Sanders set a new course record in competitive golf when he fired a round of 62 on his way to winning the Maxwell Championship at the Shadow Hawk course in Houston.
Sanders averaged a phenomenal 71.2 scoring average for the 1999-2000 season. The 2000-01 season promises to be his best yet.
He began the year by shooting rounds of 70 and 62 in sectional qualifying to earn a spot in the 2000 U.S. Open. He finished fourth at the 2000 Porter Cup and reached the round of 16 at the 2000 Western Amateur.
He was a member of the prestigious 2000 Palmer Cup team that lost to its European counterpart.
"I'd never been to England and I'd never played links golf before, so it was a great experience for me," he said. "The course is right beside the ocean, so it's a different game. You have to shoot the ball low and play closer to the ground to fight the hard wind."
Sanders carried his weight in the international competition by going 2-1-1, including a victory over his teammate Simon Robinson.
Sanders said he's ready to join the pro tour after this season.
"I've been playing golf for 18 years, and I don't plan on stopping now," he said.
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