Athlete of the Week: Christian Fanfelle

Luke Lawhorn, Sports Editor

The golf season at UTSA is a long one, starting in September and ending in May. The Roadrunners ended second at the conference a year ago and kept key players. Christian Fanfelle, now a fifth-year senior, went from being third for UTSA at the conference tournament to now the top finisher.  

“I just focused on a couple [of] little changes over the summer. I changed my mentality a little bit with it being my last year, I got to make the most of it. Since I’m the oldest player on the team I got to step up and do the most I can for my team.” Fanfelle said. 

Fanfelle understands his leadership role on the team and how taking it to the next level improves his play.  

Hunter Bott is another key returning player for the Roadrunners, who finished fourth in Conference USA last season. Fanfelle took the jump to become the front finisher for UTSA; however, knowing what Bott is capable of makes the duo special.  

“We feed off each other a lot, ask each other questions all [of] the time,” Fanfelle said. “Our games are kind of similar, and whenever we have questions, we just ask each other and we usually have answers.” 

The questions Fanfelle had were answered, showing the improvement he has made. He also talked about how he approaches these matches and touched on the similar play he and Bott share.  

“Me and Hunter’s strong suits are probably like hitting the ball with power and accuracy,” said Fanfelle. “Whenever we have good chipping or putting days, we can usually score pretty well.” 

The game of golf takes a lot of mental preparation, rhythm and focus. With a veteran player like Fanfelle, he has his own way of going about the preparation process.  

“I try to stay as calm and cool-headed as I can. A lot of people kind of get stressed out during tournaments, especially when I was a freshman, I definitely got a little stressed out and you just can’t perform at your highest when you’re worrying about all this other stuff. So really trying to stay cool and calm has helped me a lot over the years.” Fanfelle said. 

Instead of worrying about the tournament, Fanfelle just has fun.  

“I kind of just make it like a little fun game,” Fanfelle said. “Not really trying to put too much pressure on me or my team … I noticed the more pressure we put on ourselves it just doesn’t go as well.”  

This mentality is huge for a golfer, especially at the next level. Fanfelle is finishing his master’s degree; however, he is not done golfing with UTSA.  

“I’ll most likely turn pro after this year and look at either the Canadian Tour or doing a Monday Qualifier in the U.S., but yeah the goal is to turn pro,” Fanfelle said.  

Of course, the golf season is just starting, but it is never too early to have individual or team goals. When asked, Fanfelle did not hesitate to answer.  

“Team goals is to definitely make a run at regionals and to make it to nationals would be awesome. I think we definitely have the talent to do it this year,” Fanfelle said.  

With the mindset Fanfelle has and the leadership over the team, there is certainly a vision for a postseason run. Fanfelle and the UTSA golf team will be back in action Oct. 24-25 at The Clerico tournament in Tulsa, Okla.