Men’s golf pleased with play

The men’s golf team played their second tournament last weekend at the Northern Intercollegiate, hosted by the University of Michigan. The Falcons went into the tournament with high hopes of finishing in the top five. They finished with a 54-hole team score of 890, four shots away from a fourth place finish.

This weekend provided the Falcons a chance to become better acquainted with their Mid-American Conference opponents. Five other MAC schools also participated – Akron, Ball State, Eastern Michigan, Marshall, and Northern Illinois – all competed in the Northern Intercollegiate. The Falcons finished ahead of four of the competing MAC teams, and also ahead of three Big Ten teams that competed in the tournament.

The tournament provided a good opportunity for the men’s golf team to see how they match up early against their conference rivals. Coach Garry Winger was pleased by the performance of his team.

“I was very pleased with how our team finished in the tournament,” Winger said. “It always seemed though like we were just one score away each round from having a higher finish at the conclusion of the tournament.”

The Falcons were led in the tournament by senior Adam Balls, who finished tied for seventh place overall. In three rounds, he shot 214 [74-67-73], including a second round career low score of 67.

Other Falcons placing for Coach Winger were Tommy Lopez, who finished tied for 33rd with an overall score of 224. Chris Leake (T-47th, 226), Craig Pickerel (T-65th, 229), and Heath Ziglar (84th, 236) also performed very well against a highly competitive field. Xavier captured the team championship with a team score of 853, and took the trophy home on the shoulders of their three best performers. Jason Kokrak shot an ace on the 14th hole on Sunday, joining teammates Miles Malliet and Matt Makinson, who both scored hole-in-ones in practice rounds on Friday. Indiana’s Jeff Overton captured the individual title with a three-round score of 207.

Winger is confident though that as the season progresses, that the Falcons can gain more competitive experience and that they will continue to perform better as a team.

“We have a lot of talent, but some of the guys, their game was not as good as it could have been,” Winger said.

The team looks to continue to improve as the men’s golf team will be playing in the inaugural Hoosier Invitational, hosted by Indiana University. The event will take place this weekend , at the IU Golf Course.