It has been a while since I have had the chance to write about the great success that our team has been having lately but I think that I might be able to try and catch everyone up...
After two rounds of the GPAC Conference Tournament/National Tournament Qualifier, we have a commanding lead over Nebraska Wesleyan University, our closest competitors who are 19 strokes behind after two rounds. The next closest is Morningside who are 36 strokes behind and I am unsure about the exact strokes, but I believe that Hastings is next, 42 strokes behind and then USF is 46 strokes behind. We have a fairly large cushion underneath us for the Spring Season, but we always play hard and solid in the Spring, so I am hoping we can not only maintain our lead, but build on that to try and repeat as Conference Champions and punch our ticket to the national tournament.
Some details...Nick Gates is leading the GPAC with a two round total of 143 (E) for the two days of competition. He fired a solid opening 70 (-2) at Wild Oak Golf Club and followed that up with a 73 (+2) at Wilderness Ridge in Lincoln, Nebraska. Closely behind him is fellow teammate, Abbotts, who won the second qualifier with a score of 72 (+1) to put him two strokes behind Gates after two rounds. Also looking inside the top-10 is the other three Tigers in the line up. Freshman, Andrew Farrand fired a solid 75 to follow up his 73 from Wild Oak to sit in a tie for 4th place while sophomores Tyler Evenson and Chris Pritchard each sit in a tie for 8th, respectively. Evenson (79) and Pritchard (77) helped the Tigers to a 297 at Wilderness Ridge and were a part of the ONLY team to have all 5 scores in the 70s. No other team accomplished this feat and no other team has yet to do that at either qualifier.
Recently, the team traveled to St. Louis for the Lindenwood Fall Invitational. The Tigers were a part of a 24 team field that included some extremely good teams: Shorter College, Davenport University, Missouri Valley, St. Ambrose, Lindenwood, Oklahoma Baptist, William Woods, Lubbock Christian, and Southern Nazarene. The Tigers were able to pull off another record-breaking performance firing a three round total of (306-300-290) 896 (+32) for the tournament to come in a three way tie for 3rd with Missouri Valley and Oklahoma Baptist. The Tigers were led by senior, Brett Abbotts who fired 72-74-68 (214) to finish in a tie for 2nd place at 2-under par. Abbotts' performance broke the DWU 54-hole scoring record that was previously held by Tommy Hoek at 227 (+14 on a par 71 golf course). Following closely behind was sophomore Chris Pritchard who fired 75-71-76 (222) to finish 14th at 6-over par. The Tigers were rounded out by freshman Billy Jarrett (81-78-84, 233), junior Nick Gates (78-77-79, 234) and sophomore, Tyler Evenson (86-82-72, 240). The 290 the Tigers shot on the third day of play was the 2nd low round of the day and catapaulted us from 11th place to a tie for 3rd, the biggest jump in the entire field. The only other teams to beat the Tigers for the 54-hole event were Shorter College (2nd, 6 strokes ahead of Tigers) and Davenport University (1st, 12 strokes ahead of Tigers).
The Tigers most recent tournament comes from their home tournament, another record setting tournament for the Tigers. Junior, and Mitchell-native Nick Gates tied the DWU 18-hole scoring record with an opening round with a 7-under par 65 that led to the Tigers FINALLY breaking their own 18-hole scoring record of 289. The new record, with help from sophomore Tyler Evenson (72), senior Brett Abbotts (72) and sophomore Chris Pritchard (78) the new 18-hole scoring record for the Tigers is in red figures at 287 (-1). The Tigers also went on to win their home tournament, in record setting fashion, setting our new 36-hole scoring record of 590 (+14). Our closest competitors were Morningside and Minot State who each scored 606, respectively. Gates finished 2nd alone with a second round 80, senior Brett Abbotts finished in a tie for 5th place while the other Tigers (Jarrett, Pritchard, and Evenson) finished inside the top 15 for the tournament.
The Tigers will see action this week, Thursday and Friday, in Hastings, Nebraska for the last tournament of the Fall Season.
DWU Men's Golf Team