Women’s golf team captain at California Baptist University, Erica Wang, was named Western Athletic Conference Golfer of the Month after a strong start to the season.
Wang, senior business administration major, has played for CBU for the past four years and currently holds the 18-hole program record of 66, which is 6-under-par, that she set at the PacWest Championship in the 2017-18 season.
As the team transitioned into NCAA Division I this season, Wang claimed two top-15 individual finishes and was able to lead her team to the USA Intercollegiate Championship.
Wang said she started golfing when she was 13 to spend quality time with her dad, but eventually it turned into her hobby and passion. She said her dad and her coach play a huge part in why she has garnered success this season.
“My dad and my coach believe in me and have supported me in everything that I do,” Wang said. “They are both constantly there for me, encouraging me and helping me along the way whenever I ask for it.”
Marc Machado, head coach of women’s golf, has coached Wang all four years of her athletic journey at CBU. He said Wang is always looking to better herself, not only as a golfer but as a teammate, too.
“Erica has the best attitude of anyone I’ve ever met in my life,” Machado said. “She’s always the first person to say, ‘Yes, coach. What do you need me to do?’”
Wang said her mental performance is also vital in her athletic performance.
“Golf is a very mental game and I believe that my mentality on the golf course has helped me in more ways than I know,” Wang said.
Machado said her technique throughout the years has influenced her success this season.
“She’s very consistent. It’s a hallmark of who she is as a person and a golfer,” Machado said. “She gives herself a lot of chances to save pars and to make birdies especially with practicing and dialing in her wedges.”
Jordan Martin, junior sociology major, said Wang’s individual personality and team camaraderie plays a huge role in overall morale.
“Erica is the nicest person you’ll ever meet,” Martin said. “She is such a kind person that you can talk about anything with her.”
Both Wang’s teammates and coach said Wang’s personality and attitude have a significant impact on the team.
“(Wang) is the epitome of the perfect teammate,” Machado said. “She has really laid a solid foundation of what we are trying to look for in a student-athlete and as a person on and off the golf course.”
As with everything, golf comes with its challenges but Wang continuously pursues this passion of hers.
“Golf is a lot like life and it is filled with ups and downs,” Wang said, “but it is important to remember that in the long run, I am always improving.”
Wang and the Lancers will resume their season in January with a tournament in Mira Loma, Calif.