By Jimmy Sullivan
Fordham Men’s Golf is wrapping up its fall slate of tournaments this weekend in Pennsylvania. Its early-season success has been spearheaded by senior James Mongey, who is coming off a record-setting performance at the Bucknell Invitational on Columbus Day weekend. Mongey was named the Atlantic 10 Conference’s Golfer of the Week for the week of Oct. 3, and his exploits previously helped the Rams to a team victory at the Ryan Lee Invitational in September. In light of these accomplishments, The Fordham Ram sat down with Mongey to find out a little bit more about him.
TFR: How did you get into golf?
JM: I played baseball until I was 12 or 13. Honestly, I kind of just got tired of it and switched over to golf. My dad introduced me to it, and from there, I kind of fell in love with it, and I’ve been playing it ever since.
TFR: What made you decide to come to Fordham?
JM: I always wanted to go to college near a big city. All the colleges I was looking at were near Boston, Washington D.C., or New York, and I wanted to go to business school too.
TFR: When did you come to realize that you could play golf at a college level or beyond?
JM: As I moved through high school and I got a little better, I started playing in some metropolitan tournaments and state events. I just kind of knew that if I kept working at it, I would be able to play at the college level.
TFR: How was the team able to return to form after the middle of the fall season?
JM: With golf, there is a lot of ebb and flow; some weeks you play well, other weeks you don’t play well, and you can’t really put your finger on it. Joseph Trim has been playing really well, he’s had probably even a better fall than I’ve had. He probably hasn’t gotten that recognition, but he’s been playing great. Matt Schiller’s been steady. So some of the senior guys have been steadying the ship, and we did play well last week, which is nice.
TFR: What has been the main reason, if any, for your success this year?
JM: I would say that I am just that much more mature. This is the second or third time I’ve seen all of these courses, so I’m pretty comfortable on all of them. I’ve been putting pretty well, and that’s what it comes down to, and that’s why I’ve been playing well, I would say.
TFR: How have you adjusted to having a leadership role on the team?
JM: As you get older, you have more perspective on what is to be expected at Fordham Golf. You kind of know how it works every year. You also try to be a role model for the younger guys and do the right thing.
TFR: How will you stay prepared to play golf during the winter break?
JM: I always think it’s nice to have a winter break and take a few months off to kind of relax and get your mind off golf. I’ll do some other things; I’ll probably play a lot of basketball, and then I’ll try to be as fresh as possible for the spring.
TFR: You had talked earlier about Fordham’s business school being a big factor in your decision to come here. What do you plan on doing after you leave Fordham?
JM: I am a finance major. It’s been a busy fall because I’ve been trying to look for a job. I think golf works great with business and I’m hoping to use that skill to find a job where I can play some golf or something like that.
TFR: What is your most memorable moment at Fordham, golf or otherwise?
JM: I would say so far, my most memorable moment was going to the Atlantic 10 Tournament in my sophomore year. It was by far the best college competition I had ever seen. Flying down to the tournament and staying there for almost a week was cool, and it was a new experience in which I didn’t know what to expect. Although I didn’t play as well as I was hoping to, I think I came away from it a better player and I learned from it.
TFR: Do you have a favorite golfer that you model your game after?
JM: I like watching Jordan Spieth a lot. He seems to have a mental edge over anyone. He doesn’t really do anything that wows you, but at the end of the day, he always seems to have one of the lowest scores at every tournament on tour. He’s gritty, and he’s able to get it done; whether it be making putts or having that mental edge, it is very impressive to watch.
TFR: What have you taken away from your entire experience here at Fordham?
JM: It’s crazy to reflect on all of this already. Overall, there have certainly been ups and downs. You miss out on stuff here when you’re away, but having the highs of winning tournaments is a lot of fun. I think it’s been a very positive experience. I think it’s taught me how to balance a schedule so that when I’m out in the business world, I feel like I’ll be able to manage my time. I think the other thing would be that you always feel accountable for your teammates and you try to be the best person you can be.