A lack of consistent scoring from the Gophers’ starters resulted in a fourth place finish at the Windon Memorial Classic in Glencoe, Ill.
However, Minnesota was led by a dazzling performance from senior Clayton Rask. Rask shot a 7-under-par 206 to tie for first place honors with Marquette junior Mike Van Sickle.
Rask started the final round in a tie for 11th but rocketed up the leader board.
“I went about my game plan and things were just working,” Rask said.
The Gophers struggled to find any rhythm in the first round of the tournament, as they scored a team 296 for the round. No Gophers golfer shot a score under par, and sophomore Ben Pisani was the closest with an even-par performance.
But things changed dramatically in the second round for Minnesota.
The Gophers vaulted themselves from 12th to 5th. In doing so, they shaved off 19 strokes from their team score to move up the team leader board.
Rask once again led the charge for Minnesota as junior Victor Almstrom contributed as well. Combining their efforts with those of their teammates, the Gophers shot a tournament team-low score of 7-under-par 277.
Rask shot a 5-under-par 66 in the second day, and Almstrom shot a 4-under-par 67. Both of their performances were season-best round scores for them individually.
“I went out with the mindset that I wanted to make a lot of birdies,” Almstrom said.
Other Minnesota golfers contributing to the second round charge were sophomore Justin Kaplan and senior Andy Paulson. Kaplan and Paulson both had second round 1-over-par performances to help vault the Gophers into fifth place.
The second round surge was wasted though, because Minnesota struggled in the final round.
Kaplan and Paulson, who were bright spots in the second round, shot bogey-filled rounds that moved the Gophers down the scoreboard.
The end result was Minnesota shooting a team 9-over-par 861 to earn their fourth place finish.
Almstrom finished in a tie for 11th with a 1-under-par 212 for the tournament.
Pisani finished by shooting a 4-over-par 217 to finish in a tie for 27th. Paulson finished with a 14-over-par 227 to finish in a tie for 55th. Kaplan shot a 15-over-par 228 to finish 59th.
Northwestern won the tournament by shooting a 4-under-par 848.
The weekend was summed up by Almstrom who said he played “27 good holes and 27 bad holes”.
The Minnesota women’s golf team placed ninth at the Hawkeye Invitational, this past weekend.
The Gophers were lead by junior Paige Bromen. Bromen shot a 20-over-par 236 to finish 18th.
Also contributing to the Gophers team score were freshman Mary Narsizi and senior Emily Brand. Narsizi shot a 30-over-par 246 and Brand shot a 34-over-par 250. Both women finished in the top 50.
As a team, Minnesota carded round scores of 322-329-328 to finish with a team score of 979.
Winning the tournament was Chattanooga who shot a team score of 909 to capture the first place honors.