Sixth Place

Chris Werner, Sports Reporter

The Iowa men’s golf team will finish in sixth place at the Big Ten Championships in French Lick, Indiana, April 29-May 1.

Were it not for the Hawkeyes’ runner-up showing at the Hawkeye Invitational last weekend in Iowa City, I would have predicted an eighth or ninth-place finish for the team at the conference tournament.

Prior to its annual home event, Iowa had not cracked the top five in any stroke play event as a team this spring. The Hawkeyes’ best showing had been a tie for sixth place at the Schenkel Invitational March 18-20.

Before the Hawkeye Invitational, only one Iowa player had registered a top ten individual finish: junior Mac McClear. In the four stroke-play events Iowa competed in this spring, McClear recorded two top-ten finishes.

The Hawkeyes came to play at the Hawkeye Invitational. Iowa counted three top-ten performances on its home course. Junior Garrett Tighe placed second, McClear was fifth, and senior Gonzalo Leal Montero finished in a tie for sixth.

On the final day, Iowa’s team score of 280 was the best in the Hawkeye Invitational field by six shots. Two hundred eighty is Hawkeyes’ second-best tournament round of the spring.

The Hawkeyes’ best team score of 274 came at the Puerto Rico Classic. The event was Iowa’s first of the spring, and tournament conditions were warm with calm winds.

The Hawkeye Invitational’s weather was much different. During the final round, the temperature never eclipsed 50 degrees, and the wind played a big role.

While Iowa struggled for four of its five spring tournaments, the Hawkeyes saved their best for last. In a conference with five teams inside the top-50 in the country, I predict the 75th-ranked Hawkeyes will place sixth at the Big Ten Championships.

Facebook Comments