Iowa men's golf in third place after day one of Golfweek Conference Challenge
The Iowa men’s golf team sits in third place among 15 teams after a first round score of 4-over in the Golfweek Conference Challenge at Spirit Hollow Golf Course in Burlington.
The Hawkeyes trail Missouri (2 under) and Ball State (1 over) with two rounds remaining.
“We got off to a good start today. You could tell that we were more prepared [than last week],” head coach Mark Hankins said. “All five guys were engaged in the moment and played hard.”
Junior Steven Ihm had an impressive first round score of 4 under, and he is tied for first place with Jace Long of Missouri. Ihm started his round with four-straight birdies and had only two bogeys or worse all day.
“Sixty-eight is a great round,” Hankins said. “He only had one blip with a double bogey late, but he hung in there. He was patient and putted well.”
Sophomores Ian Vandersee and Brian Bullington both shot 2 over. Bullington holed the only eagle of the day for the Black and Gold.
Freshman Ryan Marks scored a 5 over opening round, and sophomore Joseph Winslow finished 4 over. Winslow is making his first appearance for the Hawkeyes in this tournament.
Iowa is in good shape after the first nine holes of the tournament. The team had 10 birdies compared with 8 bogeys but faltered slightly in the second half of the day. The squad could only muster 6 birdies while bogeying 10 holes to end the first round.
Hankins said keeping focus throughout the day is something he wants to see in the next two rounds.
“We left a few shots out there,” he said. “We need to do a better job finishing our round. The back 9 definitely played a little tougher, but we’ll continue to learn and improve.”
Iowa golfers will tee off between 10:40 a.m. and 11:20 a.m. today. Each golfer will be paired with an athlete from Missouri and Ball State, the two teams the Hawks trail in the tournament.
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