Seymour sophomore aims for state finals bid in golf


Out of all of the rounds he has played over the past 365 days, Owen Marshall just now feels he is playing his best golf.

The Seymour High School sophomore is making his first Providence Regional appearance Thursday at Champions Pointe Golf Club in Henryville and hopes to move on to next week’s state finals.

The top three teams and five individuals not on an advancing team at regional will play 36 total holes Tuesday and Wednesday at Prairie View Golf Club in Carmel.

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Seymour hasn’t sent a golfer to state since Dexter Hinton moved on as an individual in 2006.

The Owls’ No. 1 golfer has put together some solid scores at the end of the season.

Marshall shot a 6-over-par 78 at the Bloomington North Sectional on Monday at Bloomington Country Club to tie for the top regional-qualifying individual score. In his freshman year, Marshall shot a 90 at sectional.

Last year, Marshall drifted between the No. 2 and No. 3 spots for the Owls. Tyler Bullard, a 2018 graduate, played at No. 1 all of last season.

Marshall has led the team the entire spring, and he said he likes playing with the top competition.

“You always play better when you’re playing with great competition, which I’ve been doing the whole year,” Marshall said. “It’s still the same golf course, though. You just go out and play it.”

Owls coach Jim Hoffman said Marshall has shown a lot of improvement.

“This is his second year of varsity golf. I always think the experience is the key,” he said. “He was thrown in as a freshman, and I think he has really matured. All along, we’ve stressed how we give up strokes when we’re not engaged mentally. That’s the difference.”

Prior to the sectional, Marshall placed third overall in the North and South of 40 Invitational at Oak Tree in Plainfield on May 28 with a career-best 75 (+2).

“I’m peaking at the right time,” Marshall said. “I’ve improved mentally more than anything. I don’t know that I’m actually playing any better. I’m just plaything through and staying away from the big numbers.”

He has seen the regional course already this season. On May 25, Marshall shot 79 (+7) at the Providence Invitational at Champions Pointe.

“I love Champions Pointe,” Marshall said. “It’s a little more open and has big greens. It’s always in great shape and has a beautiful layout. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Hoffman said Marshall will have a solid plan for the course going into the tourney.

“The only thing that hurt him the last time he was at Champions was a couple holes,” he said. “I think we’re playing a lot more conservative on those.”

Marshall said his short game has come together in recent weeks.

“I’ve concentrated a lot more on chipping and putting,’” he said. “I always say, ‘Drive for show, putt for dough.’ I’ve improved a lot on those this year.”

While Marshall knows he will need to put together an outstanding round to keep his season alive, he is taking it one hole at a time.

“I’m going to have to play really well,” Marshall said. “I’m going to have to improve my irons a little bit and continue to hit the driver well. Coach has worked with me on avoiding the big numbers, cutting off strokes that have held me from shooting in the 70s. Mentally, I’ve been really engaged the past few weeks.”

Hoffman has faith that Marshall will compete at the regional.

“He has the game. He has the length and short game, and now, he has the mental side of it,” Hoffman said. “I think things are boding well for him.”

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