Life as a Blue Devils golfer certainly does not lack excitement, according to Slieve Russell member Lisa Maguire.
Lisa alongside Sister Leona, made the decision to peruse a golf scholarship in the US after she completed her leaving certificate in 2014. Asked why she chose Duke, she said: "Leona and I visited different Universities and had spoken to other golfers who had attended Duke. When we visited the university, we spoke to the coach and the team, and the facilities were brilliant as were the academics, so it was an obvious choice.”
Lisa is a sophomore at the university alongside Leona and there are five other members on the women’s golf roster; Celine Boutier (France), Virginia Elena Carta (Italy), Sandy Choi (Seoul), Gurbani Singh (India) and Yi Xiao (China).
A standard day as a Blue Devils golfer includes attending class in the morning for her psychology studies, playing golf on a Monday/Wednesday and Friday afternoon and practicing on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.
The gym schedule is not to be snubbed as she is there at least three mornings a week, before class.
Lisa talked about the team environment and how there were significant differences between what she was used to in Ireland versus her daily routine in North Carolina.
“We practice together, albeit it on different parts of our game. The dynamic is very different to Ireland but the programme is very coherent as the whole team are in the same place.”
Lisa went through a big swing change last year but the focus has switched slightly for now, as her focus is on pre shot and practice routines.
“Consistency is key,” added the talented 21-year old, who is now working with US-based coach Nick Bradley with the blessing of long time Irish coach Shane O’Grady.
“Practice and preparation vary depending on where the team are going to play next and whether it’s north or south,” she said.
Generally five players travel to each tournament and team selection differs from week to week. The selection criteria is not set in stone and is based on previous tournament performance, combined with results from weekly on course competitions.
Lisa noted that head coach Dan Brooks, “always likes us to have a card in our hands as it focuses us even during on course practice."
Recent Results (2015)
- June 2015 British Ladies Amateur Portstewart Last 64
- June 2015 Irish Women’s Close Championship Rosapenna Last 32
- July 2015 Member of victorious Ulster Interprovincial Team Wexford 1st
Supporting the basketball team, going to the movies and bowling are all off the course hobbies of Lisa’s.
“Leona and I try to go shopping and max out Dad’s credit card too, when we can," she laughed.
Setting goals was always important for Lisa and she shared her short term plan with us,
"I’m hoping to finish out the season well over here and then play well in the British Amateur in Scotland and European Individual in Sweden," she said. "June and July will be pretty hectic at home but I’m looking forward to it."
Upcoming Schedule *Depending on Team Selection
- LSU Tiger Golf Classic
- Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic
- NCAA Regional Championship
- ACC Championship
- NCAA Championship
Player Profile — Lisa Maguire
- Age: 21
- Golf Club: Slieve Russell
- Handicap: +3
- Age you started: 10
- Most Memorable Achievement: Winning the European Ladies Individual Championship
- Favourite Golf Course: Slieve Russell
- Dream Fourball: Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Suzann Pettersen
- Favourite Club: Lob Wedge
- Best Part of your Game: Short Game
- Lifelong Career Ambition: Play professional golf on the LET and LPGA tours
- Best Shot/Putt (Course, Club & Why?): Holing a putt on the final green to win a fourball match in the 2010 Curtis Cup
- Hobbies Outside Golf: Playing all kinds of sports, reading, listening to music
- Stroke Play or Match Play: Strokeplay
- Putter or Driver: Driver