Men's golf finishes 10th in season-opening tourney

BY DI STAFF | SEPTEMBER 11, 2012 6:30 AM

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The Iowa men’s golf team was one of many that struggled on the final day of the Golden Gopher Invitational at Spring Hill Golf Club of Wayzata, Minn., on Monday.

After finishing 25-over after the first two rounds, the team couldn’t find consistency and shot 33-over in the final round. The Hawks finished tied for 10th place among 15 teams at the tournament.

“The conditions were twice as hard today compared to yesterday,” head coach Mark Hankins said. “With the 25- to 35-mph wind gusts, everybody struggled.”

Every team but Arkansas saw its score rise because of the unfavorable weather. The Hawkeyes’ team score of 321 for the day was the third worst in the tournament ahead of only St. Johns (Minn.) and Lamar.

Junior Steven Ihm finished with the best overall score for Iowa, with his 13 over slotting him into a tie for 29th place. Ian Vandersee finished 1 stroke behind his teammate after a final round 80 on the par 72 course.

Ryan Marks and Brian Bullington both finished tied for 52nd place at 19 over. Marks shot a final round 81, and Bullington clubbed an 82.

Landon Kowalski shot the best single round for the Black and Gold with a 72 in the first round, but he couldn’t continue the pace in the third round as he holed an 88.

“We’re not pleased with how we finished,” Hankins said. “But it was the first tournament of the year, so there were the usual nerves. This will be a good learning experience for us.”

The Hawkeyes will take to the fairways again on Sept. 16 in the Golfweek Conference Challenge in Burlington.

—by Tommy Reinking

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