Big Ten Championships: Hawkeye men's golfers finish sixth

BY DI STAFF | APRIL 30, 2012 6:30 AM

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The Iowa men's golf team finished sixth at the Big Ten championships, held at the Pete Dye Course of the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Ind. Iowa finished at 51 over, 28 shots behind Big Ten champion Illinois.

The Hawkeyes couldn't overcome a rocky first day of the tournament on April 27, on which they shot a 38 over 614 in the opening two rounds.

The third round, held April 28, saw Iowa rebound with a 1 under 287 that tied with Indiana's final round for the best round of the tournament. Hawkeye senior Barrett Kelpin set a course record by firing a 5-under 67. Steven Ihm also recorded an under-par score by shooting at 70.

Iowa head coach Mark Hankins said he was pleased with the way his team was able to bounce back after a rough opening day in French Lick.

"We didn't play very well [on the first day] trying to get used to this golf course," Hankins said in a release. "[In the third round] I thought we kept our head, didn't panic, and Barrett and Steven came in with a couple of really good numbers to help put us over the top."

The Hawkeyes finished the tournament with a 14-over team score on Sunday. Senior Chris Brant led Iowa on the event's final day by shooting a 70 to finish the tournament at 9 over, a score good enough to tie for 10th place. Illinois' Luke Guthrie won his second-straight championship and became the 14th golfer to win numerous Big Ten titles — a list that includes PGA stars Steve Stricker and Luke Donald.

The Hawkeyes will hope to gain an invitation to the NCAA regionals, which will be held May 17-19 at sites to be determined after the conclusion of all conference tournaments.

— by Ryan Murphy

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