Late effort not enough for Kent State men’s golf

Ray Strickland

The Flashes played better in the second and third round, but still finished in last place in the U.S. Collegiate on Sunday in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Kent State started the tournament sluggish, lacking the execution the men’s golf team has traditionally displayed in the past.

The Flashes came out strong in the second and third rounds of the tournament, though. Kent State shot a combined total of 12-over-par in the second and third rounds, a lower score than they scored in the first round at 16-over-par.

“It started in the second round,” Kent State coach Herb Page said. “We were very competitive in the second round and the third round. We had a guy under-par each day, which really helps. There was more consistency. There’s light at the end of the tunnel here.”

The Flashes have been looking for more consistency this season, particularly after a last-place finish last week at the Bank of Tennessee tournament at Blackthorn Golf Course. 

One of the major reasons Kent State struggled in Tennessee was that they were awful at their Par 5s last week. The Flashes shot a 13-over-par for last place on Par 5s. In the U.S. Collegiate Championships, Kent State shot 7-under-par on Par 5s this week, finishing in sixth place.

“It was kind of a hangover from last week, but we did right the ship on the Par 5s,” Page said. “We actually had a competitive score with the field — we just executed better shots.”

Freshman Ian Holt shot a team best with a 1-under-par in his final round to finish 2-over-par overall in the tournament. He finished in 32nd place.

Freshman Chase Johnson finished behind Holt in 59th place after scoring an even par in his final round Sunday with an overall score of 8-over-par. 

“We are all disappointed in how we finished,” Johnson said about the overall outcome of the U.S Collegiate Championships. “After that first round, we kind of settled in a little bit.”

Fellow freshman, J.D. Hughes finished the tournament at 10-over-par for 65th. Sophomore Josh Whalen scored 1-over-par in the final round to finish in 69th place. Junior Sebastian Bendsen had a long weekend, finishing in second-to-last place (78th) at 20-over-par.

The collegiate was the final event of the fall for the Flashes. The 2015 spring season will pick up at the Oakbourne Country Club on March 2-3 at the Lousiana classics tournament.

Contact Ray Strickland at [email protected].