Women’s golf team finishes fourth, Men’s team finishes 14th

Gophers sophomore Celia Kuenster tees off at the Minikahda Club during the Minnesota Invitational on Tuesday afternoon.

Gophers second year Celia Kuenster tees off at the Minikahda Club during the Minnesota Invitational on Tuesday, September 15.

Alex Tuthill-Preus

Gophers second year Celia Kuenster tees off at the Minikahda Club during the Minnesota Invitational on Tuesday, September 15.

Jack White

The University of Minnesota women’s golf team tied for fourth place  at the Minnesota Invitational on Tuesday.

They fared better than the men’s team over the last few days, tying with Kent State in team competition. In addition, sophomore Celia Kuenster was the individual champion of the tournament.

The women’s team shot 895 as a team, highlighted by a 292 in the first round. The top team was paced by Kuenster, who shot a 68 in round one, a 72 in round two and a 73 in round three to finish with a total score of 213.

“She fought through a lot of things today to win the tournament,” women’s head coach Michele Redman said. “She hadn’t been in a position where she was actually leading an event going into the last day … I think this was big for her.”

After the tournament, Redman stressed that the team needed to improve on their short game going forward.

“We’re young,” she said. “I think that everybody is learning a lot right now.

Men place 14th

The men’s first team placed 14th in the tournament, while the men’s second team took 15th place in the Gopher Invitational at the Windsong Farm Golf Club in Independence, Minn., on Sunday and Monday.

The University of Oklahoma won the tournament with a score of 854, well ahead of the Gophers score of 899.

Play was suspended on the first day due to darkness. The wind also played a factor throughout the event.

“I really enjoyed being able to see our guys under the tough conditions,” head men’s golf coach John Carlson said.

Tom Vining, a freshman on the Gophers second team, stood out in his first collegiate meet and finished in fifth place individually.

“Overall, it was a good first tournament for me,” Vining said. “We would’ve liked to have played a lot better on our home track. [As a team], we just didn’t have it this week.”

Vining shot 73, 70 and 74 over the course of two days, posting a 217 total for the tournament — the best individual score for Minnesota. The freshman from Sioux Falls, S.D., gained experience over the summer, playing at the U.S. Amateur Championship. Carlson said he was impressed with Vining’s debut performance.

“He played outstanding. Seventy is a really good score out here, especially this afternoon,” Carlson said on Sept. 13.

Junior Jose Mendez scored a 70 in the final round of the invite, which was the best round of any of the golfers on the first team.

Sophomore Rúnar Arnórsson added a 73 on the final day, helping the Gophers first team edge out the second team 899 to 901.