Men’s golf travels to Florida for Big Ten Match Play Championship

BY DI STAFF | FEBRUARY 11, 2011 7:10 AM

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After last week’s Big 4 Match Play exhibition tournament in Scottsdale, Ariz., the No. 11 Iowa men’s golf team will travel to Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., to take part in the third-annual Big Ten Match Play Championship today and Saturday.

The team will tee off from 11:15 a.m. until noon, with competition being televised on the Big Ten Network. This is the nation’s only televised college golf tournament.

The Hawkeyes took third place in the tournament last year.

Four rounds will take place in the two-day event to determine the winner.

Iowa is seeded second and will face the winner of the play-in match between Wisconsin and Indiana.

The squad will again take the six members of the team who traveled to Arizona last week — seniors Vince India and Brad Hopfinger and juniors Barrett Kelpin, Chris Brant, Brad George, and Jed Dirksen.

“I’m expecting a lot of tough matches, and we’ll have to play below the limit,” Dirksen said.

The teams will compete head-to-head with each individual matchup being worth a point; three and half points are needed to win a team match.

The field is rated as the 12th-strongest of any college golf tournament this spring by *Golf World*, and it will feature seven of the top 100 individual golfers in the NCAA.

Iowa, with India, Hopfinger, and Brant, has three of those seven golfers.

“I think our thing is that we have to control our expectations and try to relax and stay in the moment,” head coach Mark Hankins said.

— by Ben Wolfson

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