Westmont plans to build golf practice facilities, not golf course
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Last week the Horizon reported that the Golf Facilities Westmont plans to build are replacing Deane Field, but this is not true. The turf for the Westmont Golf Facilities will be constructed on the gravel parking lot between Lovik Field and Deane Field. Current sports and classes won’t be disrupted by the new facility. The Horizon previously stated that the facility is a golf course, but since there will be no actual golf holes, that is not true.
Westmont’s plans for the practice facility include a putting green and a chipping green for taking strokes off the teams short game, according to Director of Campus Planning, Randy Jones. Both of these will be made of a synthetic grass which replicates the springiness and behavior of organic grass. Plans also include a sand trap made of a special woven turf simulating the resistance of actual sand, alongside chipping and pitching areas. Additionally, there will be a hitting shed so that the team can improve their longer shots as well. Balls can be teed in the bays and shot into netting from two different hitting bays. Trackman technology, which is used by pros such as Tiger Woods, will capture an individual’s swing and break it down into components.
The layout of the greens were planned by Back Nine Greens, a company whose speciality is synthetic turf backyard courses.
Furthermore, last week’s article reported that Westmont fundraised $75,000 for the construction of these fields; this statement is also untrue. All the funding comes from alumni and former Warriors Basketball Standout, Stan Andersons, who maintains a multiyear donation to Westmont Campus. The field will be named after him in honor of his support.
Although Westmont is still waiting for approval from the County of Santa Barbara, the project is likely to receive the go-ahead since it is a part of Westmont’s Master Plan designated as athletics and recreation areas. “We’re hoping for a quick approval process so we can get the practice area ready before fall,” says Randy Jones, Director of Campus Planning. “But we’re hoping to complete it this summer.”
Fall semester is when the Men’s and Women’s Golf Teams are set to launch. Lined up to coach the golf team is Professor of Political Science, Dr. Tom Knecht, who learned golf at an early age. “It teaches you about grit and resilience,” Dr. Knecht said. Spots on the team are still available, and tryouts will be hosted for the team later this semester. For men, the necessary handicap is eight below. For women, it is ten below. Westmont is looking to field seven men and women for the team.