In his first year as head coach, Russell Kessler brought a refreshing perspective to the golf program at SD. One that transcends the greens and touches the hearts and minds of his players. His coaching philosophy revolves around teamwork, personal growth, and a competitive spirit, all underpinned by a commitment to creating a positive and inclusive team culture.
“Developing team chemistry is at the core of how I coach and build a program,” Coach Kessler said on a beautiful sunny afternoon while the team practiced behind him on Kesterson field. “My first order of business since taking the helm here at SD was cultivating and instilling the importance of support and camaraderie among teammates. It’s not just about golf but about creating an environment where everyone uplifts one another, ensuring a thriving and cohesive golf team.”
The healthy culture amongst teammates has contributed to the student-athletes finding joy in the game and the cool mementos Coach Kessler adds for milestones, including a birdie pin for sinking your first birdie. “The purpose of the gesture is to relish small successes and improvements throughout their golf journey, so they develop a genuine love for golf,” Coach Kessler says with a smile.
The focus has shifted in his second year as head coach. Coach Kessler's vision extends beyond golf. He aims to cultivate an appreciation for practice, linking it to self-improvement and the development of confidence. Coach Kessler believes this newfound confidence can have a ripple effect, positively influencing various aspects of the players’ lives, from socialization to self-competency and public speaking. His message is clear: success on the golf course is a testament to their individual and team capabilities.
As Coach Kessler and his team enter the season’s final stretch, his message remains clear: “Work hard, and have fun.” This enigmatic statement encapsulates the essence of his coaching philosophy.
The Lady Panthers can qualify for the league championship golf tourney, to be held on Monday, October 23rd, by ending the season with a winning record. Their next match is Thursday, October 5th, against Convent Stuart Hall at Peacock Gap, the team’s senior day. Tee time is 3:30 p.m., so swing by to support the ladies as they push for playoffs.