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UA’s MacManus one to watch for

Citizen Staff Writer



One could suggest Tarquin MacManus has already taken his place with University of Arizona golfing greats.

But the Australian sophomore doesn’t want to claim the status just yet.

“I still have a lot of room for improvement,” MacManus said. “Looking back over the fall and last season, there are a lot of shots I wish I could do over.

“Once or twice I carried on with my temper. It’s about focusing and blocking things out and getting off the next shot.”

MacManus, 19, from Cairns, Queensland, led UA in the 2007-08 season with a 72.82 stroke average.

As Arizona coach Rick LaRose would say, “You need a horse to pull the cart,” and MacManus appears to be the one to fill that role for the foreseeable future.

He gets his next chance Monday at the Arizona Invitational. The event will be held at UA’s home course, Arizona National, with 16 teams competing in the 54-hole meet.

Leadership is something MacManus acquired naturally, the same way he has played golf all his life.

“I don’t want to float my boat,” he said. “I lead by scores. I’m not going to go out there and tell people do this, do that . . . I think a good score can get guys a bit of a pump, it can be an inspiration.”

MacManus started playing golf at age 4 when his father taught him the game. By age 8 he had won a junior tournament.

He won the Greg Norman Junior Masters tournament Down Under in 2006.

MacManus plans to major in psychology, thinking it can only help his golf.

He’s had pro aspirations, he says, almost from the time he first picked up a kiddie golf club.

MacManus likes his ball-striking ability and, at an athletic 187 pounds, he can shoot it.

One of his most thrilling golf moments was at an amateur tournament recently in Florida. Tiger Woods observed his group for three holes, all of which MacManus birdied.

“It was kind of surreal, if anything,” MacManus said.

The transition to the American game and culture has not been difficult, he said.

He’s had no problem fitting in with the American college scene. He is easygoing on a laid-back campus, saving his fire for the golf course.

“Everyone loves an Aussie,” he laughs.

UA women’s tennis

The Wildcats have only played one match, but UA coach Vicki Maes says the team has already put last season’s dismal play behind it.

The Wildcats, who were winless in the Pac-10 last season, beat UC Davis 7-0 last week.

“All the girls had winning records in the fall, and that’s never happened,” Maes said. “There is a big difference this year.

“(We have) talent, and being free from injuries allows us to do a lot of things. The fall showed us we have some kids who really can play. Whether we bring that into a team environment is still the question.”

UA hosts Northern Arizona at 11 a.m. Saturday.

The meet will start with the No. 1 doubles play of UA freshman Sara Landsman and senior captain Danielle Steinberg. The duo won 8-2 last week.

Steinberg, pushing for All-America honors, was as feisty as ever, while Landsman showed great poise for a college debut.

“She loves the game and she gained our trust,” Maes said of Landsman. “That is important. She has great potential.”

Landsman was one of three freshman to win singles matches. Natasha Marks and Debora Castany also won.

Steinberg, who spent two years in the Israeli Army prior to her UA career, will be counted on to bring her teammates along.

“She always had the advantage of being a little more mature,” Maes said. “And she always wants to win, will do what it takes. Last year she had mono and other injuries but she showed her heart and soul.

“She’s a positive for everybody else.”

MacManus could be the horse to pull UA’s golf cart

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