Men’s golf bounces back, finishes second at Cedar Rapids

After struggling in the opening tournament, the Iowa men\’s golf team finished second at the Golfweek Conference Challenge.

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The Daily Iowan; Photos by Josep

Iowa’s Alex Schaake drives during a tournament at the Donald Ross Course at the Cedar Rapids Country Club in Cedar Rapids on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Sean Bock, [email protected]

After finishing 14th last week at the Gopher Invitational, the Iowa men’s golf team bounced back and finished second at the Golfweek Conference Challenge in Cedar Rapids.

The Hawkeyes were neck and neck with N.C. State throughout the final day, but the Wolfpack were too much in the end, outlasting Iowa by 2 strokes to earn the victory.

Sophomore Alex Schaake shot 4-under (68) on the last 36 holes, good for second place. Schaake shot 8-under over the course of three days.

“I wasn’t hitting the ball great the whole time,” he said. “I was scraping around the course, but I was hitting the irons really well, and that’s how I made most of my birdies on the back nine. I made a few putts and missed a few putts, but I think the ball striking really helped me out.”

Sophomore Ryoto Furuya continued his hot start to the season, shooting even on the last day and 2-under in the tournament, finishing tied for 12th.

Senior Sam Meuret also played impressively — he shot 1-under in the tournament,

which put him tied for 16th with junior Matthew Walker.

Sophomore Benton Weinberg finished tied for 30th after shooting 1-over on the last day, 5-over for the tournament.

“[I’m] disappointed because we were leading the tournament with nine holes to go but definitely proud of the effort of the guys,” head coach Tyler Stith said. “The guys have really worked hard the past couple days, and it’s definitely an improvement from the last tournament. It’s our second tournament of the year, and we have a long way to go, we have some stuff we have to work on, but this, overall, was a really good tournament for us.”

The Hawkeyes came into the day 3 strokes behind N.C. State and held the top spot with nine holes left, but the Wolfpack, led by Benjamin Shipp and his 10-under for the tournament (first place), fought back and regained the lead.

“We need to improve our short game,” Stith said. “We just threw away way too many shots inside 100 yards today. Made a lot of bogeys with wedges in our hands, and if you’re going to win a tournament and catch a team like N.C. State, you can’t make mistakes like that.”

North Carolina-Wilmington and San Francisco finished third and fourth behind the Hawkeyes. The Seahawks and Dons came tied heading into the last day, but Wilmington shot 7-under to take third by 5 strokes.

“Last week wasn’t great for us, and to play well here going into Dallas, a really tough course, and putting up five good scores this week — it’s a good sign for us,” Schaake said. “If we can keep this momentum going into next week, I think we’ll be fine.”

Iowa will head to Dallas on Sept. 24 to participate in the SMU Intercollegiate.

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