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Yorkton's Kozak hones skills on links in summer season

Kozak said her technical golf game has “grown immensely the last couple of years.
Ella Kozak attended some more challenging events this summer.

YORKTON - Yorkton golfer Ella Kozak spent the golf season taking in events which challenged her skills and built her resume, and the effort paid off.

“I did a few different events,” said Kozak who is now back in Yorkton finishing her final semester of high school. She said the focus was on golfing in less events, but taking in a few that offered tougher competition. “. . . It was a bit of a plan . . . I wanted tougher competition, I wanted to challenge myself a little bit more.”

And while she might not have won as many events as in past years, Kozak said it was a good summer in terms of her golf development and future.

“I was pretty proud of myself this summer,” she said. “I definitely feel it was a great learning experience.”

Events included the Moose Mountain Classic at Kenosee where Kozak slotted in with the men finishing in a fourth place tie, topping the provincial high school championship, attending the Canadian Junior Girls National Championship, and making the top 15 at the Glencoe Invitational.

The summer also put some bigger events on Kozak’s resume as she sought out an American scholarship.

“I did a few different visits,” she said, adding she has settled on Western Carolina University which is in Cullowhee, N.C.

Kozak said the school has a great golf program, but also a great education program which is what she plans to major in.

The higher level of competition this summer was important in putting a little extra gloss on the resume to attract a full scholarship.

The plan now is to finish her schooling, then head to Myrtle Beach in S.C. to acclimatize a bit.

“To keep my game sharp,” she said, adding it will be an opportunity to get to know the different grass of courses there and to get to know the people too.

Kozak will also continue to fine tune her game.

When asked what needs work most in her mind, Kozak said it was “the mental game” she needs to refine.

“I feel I have all the aspects of the game right now, (in terms of shots),” but she can get into mind traps.

“I tend to be in a little bit of denial on the course.”

It’s a situation where she doesn’t always believe, or accept what she is seeing and doing, and that can lead to repeating mistakes, she said.

Kozak said her technical golf game has “grown immensely the last couple of years,” but her “mental game has to catch up.”