Men's Golf Weekly Recap

Updated 9/30/2013

Sunday - Monday, September 29-30

Jack Nicklaus Invitational  FINAL RESULTS
Ball State
Eastern Michigan
Kent State


Ball State

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Tyler Merkel hung in the top 20 individually, but Monday’s final round at the Jack Nicklaus Invitational was a challenging one overall for the Ball State men’s golf team.
The Cardinals struggled to a team score of 318 on the Scarlet Course at the Ohio State University Golf Club, dropping to 11th place on the final leaderboard with a 54-hole total of 916.
California extended its overnight lead, finishing as the only one of the 12-team field in red figures. The Bears, last year’s No. 1-ranked team that won an NCAA-record 12 tournaments, posted a 19-stroke victory at 10-under 842.
Oklahoma (+9) was second, followed by Oklahoma State (+11) in third and Kent State (+25) in a tie for fourth. All four of those teams played with Ball State in last year’s NCAA Nationals and are currently ranked among the top 25 in the country. The Golden Flashes tied for fourth with Purdue.
Cal’s Brandon Hagy finished 6-under for the tournament to hold off Kent State’s Taylor Pendrith by one stroke for individual medalist honors.
Ball State played well enough through Sunday’s opening 36 holes to enter the final round in a tie for seventh with hopes of climbing higher. But the Cardinals couldn’t find their rhythm throughout Monday’s round on the par-71, 7,455-yard layout.
Merkel was the top finisher for Ball State in a tie for 16th place among the 60 golfers in the field. The senior turned in a final-round 76 to close at 6-over par 219 for the tournament. He made four birdies Monday but also carded seven bogeys and a double bogey on an up-and-down day.
McCormick Clouser posted a 79 to end the tournament in a tie for 31st with a 54-hole total of 12-over 225, while Keegan McKinney closed with an 80 to finish at 232. Zach Yinger’s 83 on Monday left him at 242 for the week, and James Blackwell’s 84 brought his tournament total to 249.
The Jack Nicklaus Invitational was the fourth tournament in four weeks for Ball State with all four of them featuring talented competition. The young Cardinals have already seen 10 of the nation’s top 25 teams this fall. They will now take a two-week break from tournament action before teeing it up Oct. 14-15 at the Crooked Stick Invitational in Carmel.
Kent State
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Taylor Pendrith's second-place finish at the Jack Nicklaus Invitational helped Kent State move into a tie for fourth as a team after Monday's final round at The Ohio University Golf Club.
Playing through an elbow injury that nearly kept him from making the trip south to Columbus, Pendrith fired a 3-under-par 68 in the final round on the difficult, 7,455-yard Scarlet Course. The senior's 6-under-par score for the tournament put him just one shot behind medalist Brandon Hagy of California.
Cal also won the team title, posting an 11-under-par 842 over three rounds to finish as the only program in the 12-team field in red numbers. The Golden Flashes' 2-over-par 286 in the final round moved them into a tie with Purdue at 25-over-par 877 for the tournament. Oklahoma finished second at 9-over par as a team, folowed by Oklahoma State in third at 11-over.
Pendrith (67-73-68–208) made the turn on Monday at even par before a run of birdies at the 562-yard 12th, the 221-yard 13th and the 473-yard 14th holes. 
Kent State's Nick Scott (75-73-73–221) finished in a tie for 21st individually at 8-over-par, while senior Kyle Kmiecik (76-75-71–222) tied for 23rd at 9-over. Senior Corey Conners (75-77-78–230) tied for 41st at 17-over and Kody Fry (81-78-74–233) closed in a tie for 47th at 20-over. 
The Golden Flashes will be off until Oct. 11 when they travel to The Ridges in Johnson City, Tenn. for the Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate.
Eastern Michigan
COLUMBUS, Ohio ( -- The Eastern Michigan University men's golf team completed play in the Jack Nicklaus Invitational with a ninth place finish after shooting 299 in the final round at the par-71, 7,455-yard Ohio State University Scarlet Course in Columbus, Ohio. EMU finished with a 54-hole total of 904 (307-298-299) and the University of California took home the tournament title with a 842 (281-280-281).
Senior Brian Churchill-Smith (Oakville, Ontario-Canada-Oakville Trafalgar) finished tied for 19th after shooting an even-par 71 in the final round for a tournament total of 220 (79-70-71). His back-to-back rounds under par made him just one of three student-athletes from a Mid-American Conference school to finish inside the tournament's top 20. Kent State's  Taylor Pendrith was the runner-up with a 208 (67-73-68) while Ball State's Tyler Merkel  was 16th with a 219 (70- 73-76).
Junior Michael Blair (Ancaster, Ontario, Canada-Ancaster Secondary-Pfeiffer) ended in a tie for 35th after shooting 226 (75-77-74).  Sophomore Stuart Grehan (Tullamore, Ireland-Colaiste Choilm) shot a 77 on Monday  to take home 40th place. Freshmen Joseph Kremer (Toronto, Ontario, Canada-Senator O'Connor) and Kyle Rodes (Plymouth, Mich.-Plymouth) rounded out the lineup with 233 (76-79-78) and a 234 (81-76-77), respectively.
The Eagles will return to action on Oct. 7-8 when they participate in the Firestone Invitational hosted by the University of Akron.
Sunday - Tuesday, September 29 - October 1

Badger Invitational
Northern Illinois

MADISON, Wis. – The Northern Illinois men’s golf team posted its second-best round of the fall, carding a team total of 305 in Tuesday’s final round of the Badger Invitational at University Ridge Golf Course. The Huskies wrapped the tournament in 13th place and junior Nick Huggins (Marietta, Ohio/Marietta) finished in a tie for 33rd to lead the Huskies individually. 
South Carolina claimed the tournament title with a final round 291 to finish with a three-round total of 856, eight-under par. Caleb Sturgeon of the Gamecocks took individual medalist honors, closing with a final round 69 for a 10-under 206 total score. 
Huggins, freshman Jake Curwin (Faribault, Minn./Shattuck St. Mary’s) and freshman Caulen Coe (Gulf Stream, Fla./Nebraska Independent School) each posted 76s to mark the lowest round of the day for NIU. Huggins’ 76 gave him a 54-hole total of 226 to tie for 33rd. The final round 76 was the low round of the tournament for both Curwin and Coe. Curwin finished with a three-round total of 232 to tie for 54th. Freshman Pierrick Fillon (Voreppe, France/Lycee Pierre Beghin) closed with a 77 to finish just three strokes behind Curwin with a 54-hole total of 235.  
The Huskies will return to Wisconsin next weekend to compete in the Invitational at Erin Hills, hosted by Marquette University, October 6-8 at Erin Hills Golf Course in Hartford, Wis.

Monday - Tuesday, September 30 - October 1

Shoal Creek Invitational

BIRMINGHAM, AL – Toledo concluded the Shoal Creek Invitational hosted by Graeme McDowell on Tuesday with a 12th-place finish. The Rockets competed against a field that was comprised of eight programs that reached post-season play in 2013, including three that reached the NCAA Championships.
Junior Chris Selfridge led UT by tying for 24th place at two-over par 218 (71-71-76). He was followed by sophomore Otto Black (78-70-79) and junior Jamie Richardson (75-74-78), who tied for 47th place at 11-over par 227. Rounding out the Rocket lineup were junior Nate Gonring (64th/79-77-79=235) and freshman Ryan McMannis (66th/89-74-82=245).
Memphis captured the team title with a record-setting 12-under par 276 today to finish at an impressive 22-under 842. Host UAB finished second at 16-under 848.  Mississippi’s Blake Morris and Memphis’ Lars van Meijel tied for first place individually at eight-under 208.
The Rockets will take this weekend off before returning to action at the Crooked Stick Invitational on Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 14-15 in Carmel, IN.