April 15, 2012
RALEIGH, N.C. - Army shot its best round of the spring season and put together a solid second round to finish 16th at the Wolfpack Spring Invitational at Lonnie Poole Golf Club.
The Black Knights shot a 299 as a team, the sixth lowest round of the 2011-12 season, in thier final tune-up to the Patriot League Tournament.
Army scored a 625 for the 36-hole event at the par-72, 7,302-yard Lonnie Poole Golf Club after opening with a 326.
Host North Carolina State won the 17-team event, shooting a 283 on the way to a tournament total 577. Lamar was second, four strokes behind, followed by East Carolina (585), Middle Tennessee State (590) and Louisville (596).
Luke Jerling of Lamar won the individual championship with a five-under-par 139, one stroke better than Jay Mulieri of Loyola and two in front of Kenneth Svanum of Francois Marion and Mitchell Sutton of North Carolina State
All five of Army players lowered their scores in the second round, including sophomore Anthony Kim who fired a one-under-par 71 on the way a tie for 57th. Kim opened with an 85 and finished at 156 for the championship. It marked Kim’s 12th career round of par or better.
“The guys played great,” said Army head coach Brian Watts. “We got off to a slow start but they fought extremely hard. They turned it around. I don’t ever remember in my coaching career a 27-stroke swing like that from one day to the next. We talked Saturday night about never giving up and how important the next shot is. They just did a great job. I am very proud of the way we finished the tournament.”
Freshman Robby Hill was Army’s lowest scorer, tying for 53 rd with a 155. Hill shot a 79 in the opening around and a 76 on Sunday.
Junior Matt Philie put together rounds of 80-79—159 to tie for 68th, along with senior William Park who shot 82-77. Sophomore Brandon Baerwaldt began his tournament with an 86 but rebounded with a 75 to place tie for 80th with a 161.
“It was a very difficult course and the conditions were challenging,” said Watts. “It’s not where we wanted to finish as a team but a lot of great things happened today. It was a great way to end the regular season. We can take the things the guys did today and build on that. This is really the first tournament of the spring where we felt like we had the majority of our lineup healthy and ready to play.”
Army will look to defend its Patriot League title April 28 and 29 at Bucknell Golf Course. The winner of the Patriot League Tournament will earn an automatic berth to the NCAA Regionals May 17.
“This was great preparation for the Patriot League Tournament,” said Watts. “We have another two weeks to prepare and I think the guys will be in a good place when it matters most.”
16. ARMY 326-299--625
T53. Robby Hill, 79-76—155
T57. Anthony Kim 85-71--156
T68. Matt Philie, 80-79--159
T68. William Park, 82-77--159
T80. Brandon Baerwaldt, 86-75--161