Feb. 15, 2006
After a seventh place finish at the Waikoloa Invitational in Waikoloa, Hawaii, the Washington men's golf team is back in Seattle preparing for the rest of the spring season.
GoHuskies.com took a moment to talk with Washington junior and defending Pac-10 Champion Erik Olson about the trip and his goals for 2006.
Here's what Erik had to say:
GoHuskies.com: You just got back from a tournament in Hawaii. How was the Trip?
Erik Olson: "The trip was a lot of fun. It's Hawaii, so you can't really complain. But you could say it was an interesting trip, tournament-wise, with the injuries and illnesses we had. All in all I think we handled the situation fairly well. We didn't perform our best, but I think we handled all of the injuries as well as we could."
GoHuskies.com: What are your goals for this season?
Olson: "I'd like to win some tournaments. I'd like to perform to the best of my ability. It would be great to be an All-American again and an All-Pac-10 selection again."
GoHuskies.com: What will it take to reach those goals and defend your Pac-10 Championship?
Olson: "I think it will take hard work. I've just got to take it one day at a time, to always try and be better tomorrow."
GoHuskies.com: What's it like being the Pac-10 Champion and practicing every day next to the NCAA Champion? (Teammate James Lepp was the 2005 NCAA medalist.)
Olson: "It's no different than it was before we won. We don't really look at each other as the Pac-10 and NCAA Champions. We're such good friends. We just try to learn from each other. I try to learn from him and I think he tries to learn from me. We really don't think about it at all. We're just friends out there, hitting the ball."
GoHuskies.com: One of the things Coach (Matt) Thurmond has mentioned is how great the team chemistry is. What's it like from your perspective?
Olson: "We're a family. The guys on the team are my closest friends at the University of Washington. I`d do anything for those guys and I think they'd do the same for me. We take a lot of pride in picking each other up."
GoHuskies.com: What would be the perfect ending to this season for you?
Olson: "Winning the National Championship, no question."
GoHuskies.com: You were diagnosed with diabetes at age 16. Do you think having to overcome that has helped you succeed?
Olson: "Yes. It makes you more disciplined about the choices you make outside of school. It makes you grow up a little quicker. Because I have to be aware of my health I'm aware of everything around me. I think it helps me make some better decisions socially, school-wise and on the golf course. It has helped me be successful in a lot of the things I do."
GoHuskies.com: You're an avid reader. Do you have any recommendations?
Olson: "The Da Vinci Code is a good read. Also Angels and Demons. I'm reading A Million Little Pieces right now - it's a pretty good book."
GoHuskies.com: It's also a pretty controversial book right now.
Olson: "It is a controversial book. That's why I like it. Oh, and the Harry Potter books aren't bad."