Men finish fifth at Wolverine Invitational

Senior Ben Pisani led the Gophers at 6-under which was good for seventh place.

by John Hageman

Two weeks after finishing third at the season opener, the Gophers men claimed fifth place at this weekendâÄôs Wolverine Invitational at Radrick Farms Golf Club in Ann Arbor, Mich. The squad came into the third and final round on Sunday in fifth out of 14 teams and ended at 3-over par, six strokes behind fourth place Baylor University . Michigan defended its home course by finishing at 24-under par, seven strokes ahead of second place Arkansas. The Wolverines placed three players in the top 10, including two of the top three. Fellow Big Ten rivals Purdue and Wisconsin finished eighth and 10th, respectively. Arkansas senior Jamie Marshall finished at 10-under par and was the tournament medalist . Gophers seniors Ben Pisani and Thomas Campbell led the team at 6-under par and one-over par, respectively. The consistent veteran play was good enough to tie for Pisani to finish seventh and Campbell to claim 17th. Freshman Frederick Van Rooyen played with the team for the first time and ended the day tied for 26th overall at 4-over par. Associate head coach Andrew Tank said he saw some good signs from the freshman. âÄúHe brought it back after a tough start in the first round.âÄù Tank said. âÄúI think there are some big positives to his game.âÄù Sophomore Derek Chang struggled to finish the final round and triple bogeyed the final hole and finished the tournament at 5-over par. Redshirt freshman David Haley Jr. struggled early in the tournament and finished at 11-over par. Because of competitive play within the team, the Gophers men are still without a definite lineup going into the rest of the year. âÄúSome guys had some good rounds,âÄù Tank said. âÄúBut as far as putting together three rounds, we are still looking to see who has got what it takes to do that.âÄù Director of Golf Brad James said that a definite lineup is not clear at all. âÄúI still think any of the guys have a chance that are back home right now or competing,âÄù James said. âÄúSo each week itâÄôs going to be different.âÄù The Gophers will travel to Chicago for the Windon Invitational, where Tank said the team will need to take it one shot at a time. âÄúObviously todayâÄôs finish shows that we have some room for improvement on finishing off the round,âÄù Tank said. âÄúThe great sign is that guys are getting under par.âÄù Finishing rounds strong is also a concern for James. âÄúIt would have been nice to see us finish stronger today,âÄù James said. With a little more experience, James said the golfers will perform better on the final holes. The Gophers women also took to the links this weekend at the Lady Northern Invitational in Madison, Wisc. After one round of play, the Gophers women are in ninth place at 16-over. Ohio State led the field at 5-under par, eight strokes ahead of second place Purdue. Junior Teresa Puga led the team at 1-over par, which was good enough to tie for 11th overall. Freshman Jackie Shepherd finished the first round tied for 24th at 3-over. The second round was in progress when paper went to print, and the final round will be played Monday.