UND Athletics

02/09/2018 | News release | Distributed by Public on 02/09/2018 16:27

A Dozen Divots: Ryan Riihinen

Here is another installment of 'A Dozen Divots', which will take a closer look at the University of North Dakota men's golf team. This session's features the newest member of the team Ryan Riihinen. The Fighting Hawks will open their spring season next week at the Pizza Hut Pat Hicks Invitational under the direction of new head coach Matt Stricker.

Where are you from and what do you like most about your hometown?
'I am from Hibbing, Minn. What I like best about Hibbing is that it is a fairly large-sized town with arguably the nicest people you will meet.'

When did you start playing golf and who got you started playing the game?
'I started playing golf at the age of five. My dad played in a men's league when I was younger and always brought me along.'

What is the favorite course you have played?
'My favorite course I have played is The Quarry at Giants Ridge in Biwabik, Minn.'

What is your dream foursome?
'My dream foursome would have to be with Phil Mickelson, Arnold Palmer, and Dustin Johnson.'

Who is your favorite professional golfer and why?
'Phil Mickelson is my favorite pro golfer because he is one of the classiest guys on the PGA Tour and he is one of the greatest golfers to ever live. I am a lefty golfer myself, so growing up watching him on television gave me the inspiration to become the greatest athlete I can be on and off the course.'

What are your hobbies outside of golf?
'My hobbies outside of golf include things like curling, pool, ping pong, hockey, hunting, and four-wheeling.'

What is your major and career aspirations?
'My major is mechanical engineering and my career goals include living either in Minnesota or Alaska with a job related to my degree and hopefully become a better golfer.'

What is your go-to club in your golf bag?
'My go-to club in my bag is most likely my 58-degree wedge. I find myself getting out of very difficult lies around the greens with that club as well as the bunkers.'

If you're playing alternate shot, who do you want driving on your team, who do you want putting and who do you want hitting an approach shot?
Driver: Dustin Johnson
Putter: Tiger Woods
Approach Shots: Phil Mickelson

How many hole-in-ones (descriptions if so) or describe your most memorable hole out?
'Unfortunately I have not made a hole in one in my life...yet. My most memorable hole out was during my senior year during regionals. I was in a three-way sudden death playoff at The Quarry at Giants Ridge. I sank a 35-foot par putt to secure a spot at the state tournament as an individual.'

If you were not playing collegiate golf, is there another sport you would want to play in college?
'If I was not playing golf at the collegiate level, I would most likely want to play hockey because I grew up around a great hockey community and it can tend to be quite competitive, especially viewing it at the collegiate level.'

What's your nickname most used by teammates?
'They haven't given me one yet.'

-- UND --