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Now back in Fargo, Olson aiming for another successful LPGA season

Amy Olson has begun training for the upcoming LPGA golf season. Sergei Belski / USA TODAY Sports1 / 2
With her husband Grant Olson being named an assistant football coach at North Dakota State, LPGA golfer Amy Olson will now call Fargo home. Sergei Belski / USA TODAY Sports2 / 2

FARGO — The 2019 LPGA season kicks off this week in Florida. One of the tour’s top players, however, was still in Fargo on Monday, Jan. 14, getting ready to grind her game into shape.

It’s been an interesting winter break for Amy Olson, the North Dakota State graduate and Oxbow, N.D., native who is now a Fargo resident again. The naming of her husband, Grant Olson, as an assistant football coach at North Dakota State last week means both are back on familiar ground.

“It’s a dream situation for us right now,” Amy said. “Just being able to come home with my family and his family not far away. To have people over for dinner and not just it being a phone call, we’re looking forward to that so much.”

Certainly, she’s looking forward to the golf season. Last year was a career blockbuster finishing 37th on the LPGA money list with over $580,000 in earnings including a pair of top-10 finishes in two major tournaments.

After a six-week layoff, it’s back to the basics. Olson played in a charity pro-am in Tucson, Ariz., last week with mixed results.

“It’s amazing how much you lose in six weeks,” she said. “I had a drive that went 180 yards. I’m sure they’re like, ‘Is this girl a pro?’ You go through the same thing everyone else does to try and get the rust off. The timing is off and everything feels foreign.”

The fundamentals of the swing, however, are still in top form. That was the assessment of Ron Stockton, Olson’s swing coach based in Palm Springs, Calif. They worked together after the Tucson tournament on getting her game in order.

“We tried some new clubs, tried to get all the weapons in order in the bag,” Olson said. “I wasn’t hitting it great but as far as the fundamental things we worked on in the last couple of years, those didn’t change. It was nice to see that they stayed and I don’t have to start over.”

Olson will head back to Palm Springs later in the week to get pre-tournament training in high gear. Olson has full status this season including entries in all of the major tournaments thanks to finishing in a tie for second in The Evian Championship major.

She’ll have to play her way into the season-ending tourneys, which players have to do every season anyway. Her season will begin in mid-February at the Women’s Australian Open.

That will be followed by a tournament in Thailand and one in Singapore before returning to the United States for a West Coast swing starting March 21 in Phoenix.

The hope is an improved putting and wedge game will continue to see strides in 2019.

“That’s where the scoring is,” Olson said. “I’m excited. I feel like my swing is in place and is a lot more consistent.”

Her primary sponsorships with Bell Bank and Sanford Health haven’t changed. Both have strong ties to Fargo.

They are ties that Olson can see more of first hand, once again. Grant Olson, who played at NDSU from 2010-13, spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach at Indiana State.

“Grant has always had such great relationships with the coaches at NDSU,” Amy said. “When we all got wind of this, we knew it was a possibility but it’s always hard because you don’t know about the timing and if that spot will be open.”

Jeff Kolpack

Jeff Kolpack covers North Dakota State athletics, the Fargo Marathon and golf for The Forum. His blog can be accessed at www.bisonmedia.areavoices.com. On the radio, Kolpack & Izzo sports talk show runs from 9-11 a.m. every Saturday morning. April through August, the WDAY Golf Show with Jeff Kolpack runs from 8-9 a.m.

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