By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express
To say Oshawa golfer James Krantz had a banner year would be an understatement.
Krantz, playing on the Ontario University Association circuit, had more than luck on the links in 2015.
A graduate of R.S. McLaughlin CVI, Krantz has been named UOIT’s male athlete of the year – the first golfer to do so. On top of that, Krantz wrapped up his season with the best finish in the program’s history, earning the program’s MVP title for the fourth straight season in the process.
“I couldn’t have really drawn it up any better,” Krantz says. “That was pretty special.”
Early in the year, Krantz secured a victory at the Queen’s Invitational with a low round of 65 – a score he put up amid stormy and windy conditions. He would later finish second at the Western Invitational.
In the final stretch of the season, Krantz says his game slipped a little bit, as it has every year, when his mind shifts from the golf course to the textbooks.
“Coming out of the summer, I’ve been practising right, so I was really sharp and as the season goes on, my game kind of deteriorates a little bit because I’m not able to practise as much because of school and everything,” he says.
Yet, he still managed to finish 12th or better in five of the six tournaments leading up to the OUA championship.
At the OUA finals, hosted at the Oshawa Golf and Curling Club, Krantz finished among the top-20 university golfers in the province for the second straight year.
Looking ahead, Krantz says he hopes to move on to a professional career on the course, with opportunities to play in amateur qualifying tournaments this summer. In preparation, he says he will have to improve his mental game on the course.
“My mindset would have to get better,” he says. “I would have to be able to be more comfortable with the ups and downs of a round.”
To do so, Krantz says he needs to work on removing the emotional aspect of the game and focusing on his strengths.
“Just stay within yourself, within your own rhythms, which is pretty much what golf is,” he says. “Play to your strengths, minimize your weaknesses and go from there, and take what you’re given.”