Xavier School San Juan, known more for its basketball excellence, is slowly making its mark in golf.
Buoyed up by its strong showing in the recent 2022 Interschools tournament that ended at Mimosa Plus golf course in Clark, Angeles, Xavier is currently looking for new talents to rebuild its team.
“Golf is gaining popularity inside and outside Xavier. This year, we had a record turnout for varsity applications and a lot of the boys really practice hard individually,” said Duane Tan who is actively involved in the school’s golf program.
Curiously, golf gained popularity at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“During the pandemic, remnants of the 2019 team continued to train by means of fitness and performance training which we did online through Athlete’s Edge,” Tan revealed.
“We never got to train or play golf until summer of 2022 when we did an initial tryout were we formed the core of the team.”
Tan said they gave new applicants a chance to join the team by asking them to submit scores from playing in tournaments organized by the Junior Golf Foundation of the Philippines and the National Golf Association of the Philippines.
As a result, Xavier was able to form a 25-strong team. Those who did not make it were relegated to a training pool.
All members of the team and training pool had training with coaches Steph Yu and Hanson So.
To prepare for the Interschools, the team held practice rounds at Beverly Place in Pampanga.
Parents had to shoulder the expenses, although some sponsors, including Asia United Bank, were tapped to help the squad, according to Tan.
Their uniforms were provided by Mighty Sports.
Tan said they were able to excel in Interschools because players contributed in each division.
Among those who shone for the team werwe Rico See, fourth runner-up in Senior High; Geoffrey Tan, third runner-up in Junior High; Mico Ungco, fourth runner-up; and Kenzo Tan, second runner-up in Lower School.
Xavier also sparkled in the developmental tour as well.
Among those involved in Xavier’s program were council members Leah Lee and JGFP president Oliver Gan.
With the departure of some players, Tan said they are now rebuilding their squad.
“Training will start early next year,” he said.