Golf team adds three international players to roster


Finance freshman Chong Li Lee tees off at Bayou Oaks City Park. Li is from Johor, Malaysia, but chose Loyola and joined the golf team. Photo credit: Drew Goff

Rosha'E Gibson

The Loyola men’s golf team has added three international students to their roster. Business managment freshman Kerem Tanpolat, finance freshman Chong Li Lee and international business freshman Joaquin Perez are different nationalities, joined the Wolf Pack and are expected to make an impact this season.

Head coach Drew Goff stated that the players were brought in as part of the recruitment process. According to Goff, they all had their own unique ways of recruitment.

Chong Li Lee is from Johor, Malaysia and is someone that Goff has been impressed with for sometime.

“Chong Li reached out to me sometime in the fall of last year,” Goff said. “He sent me his recruiting profile, some swing videos, and his results. I was really impressed with his mechanics of his swing and the quality of the tournaments he has placed well in.”

Kerem Tanpolat is a rising young player from Istanbul, Turkey that Goff said he is also looking forward to working with.

“Kerem was contacted through an agency that connects international players with universities in the United States,” Goff said. “He has an outstanding resume. He has played for the Turkish national team and is really one of the best young players from their country.”

Lastly, Joaquin Perez is a young player from Quito, Ecuador. He is the brother of Jose Perez, part of Loyola’s golf team. Goff said he was told of Joaquin’s talent by Jose Perez.

“It was Jose who brought Joaquin to my attention,” Goff said. “For a long time, he said that his younger brother may have been better than him. He played a lot of junior golf and very successful in Ecuador so it was through those conversations that lead us to get him.”

Philip Nijoka, business senior, said he sees huge upsides to all three players and said he believes they can make a difference this season.

“From what I’ve seen, I think they’re going to improve us quite a bit,” Nijoka said. “They have a lot of talent and potential. With everything that I’ve seen them do and heard them say, they want to be some of the best players that have ever walked through Loyola.”

Nijoka cited the benefit the new additions can create to the intra-team competition.

“It will motivate all the other players to play well because they know they would have to compete with the younger guys to make it to tournaments,” Nijoka said.

Nijoka said all three are already on the right track for success.

“All of them have their heads on straight, they are focused on what is going on, and they are all willing to learn and gain insight on what it takes to win and how they could better themselves on and off the golf course.”

Goff said he’s hoping the talent added along with returning talent can lead to a successful season.

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; text-align: justify; text-indent: 10.0px; font: 8.5px Utopia}

“I feel like the players we have returning along with the talent of the freshmen coming should be enough to push us to one of our goals which is to win the conference championship in April,” Goff said.