Men’s golf ends fall season with ninth-place finish

Brad Tansey

The Kent State men’s golf team wrapped up its fall season yesterday by finishing tied for ninth place at the U.S. Collegiate Championship in Alpharetta, Ga.

No. 34 Kent State carded final score of 25-over par in a tournament that housed 11 of the nation’s top 40 teams. Georgia Tech swept the 15-team field, finishing an outstanding 28-under par. The Yellow Jackets finished 27 strokes ahead of runner-up UCLA. The No. 3 Bruins finished 1-under par.

“We never put the finish on any round,” Kent State coach Herb Page said. “I don’t want to be so damn negative at the end of the year, but it’s the truth.”

Freshman Taylor Pendrith led the Flashes in his second collegiate appearance, carding a final score of 3-over par.

“He got a little more confidence,” Page said. “I’m real happy. It gives us a little more depth for spring, and sometimes those freshmen are a little hungrier and got something to prove. He certainly proved it. Nice week for him.”

Georgia Tech junior James White won the tournament with a three-round score of 12-under par.

U.S. Collegiate Championship

Kent State results

1. Taylor Pendrith (T20)

2. Mackenzie Hughes (T27)

3. Corey Conners (T50)

4. Kevin Miller (T62)

5. John Hahn (78): Did not finish

Team results (15 teams)

1. Georgia Tech: -28

2. UCLA: -1

3. Texas A&M: +2

4. Southern California: +3

5. Virginia: +6

9. Kent State: +25

“It was a phenomenal week on (Georgia Tech’s part),” Page said. “They played very well.”

Kent State junior Mackenzie Hughes finished second on the team, finishing tied for 27th place with a score of 5-over par.

Page said it was hard to compare Hughes’ performance this week to last week’s at the Bank of the Ridges at Tennessee which he won.

“I don’t like to single guys out,” Page said. “It was a pretty good golf course — pretty hard golf course — and anybody you beat at this tournament is good.”

The Flashes came out swinging in the first round, shooting a day one score of 6-over par. Pendrith recorded an ever-par round, sinking three birdies, which tied him for 19th place. The top four of Kent State’s five-man team were separated by four strokes.

Junior Mackenzie Hughes shot a first-day score of 2-over par. His score included an eagle on the par-five 9th hole.

White finished the first day 10-under par. He sank 10 birdies, including three in a row on two different occasions.

In the second round, Hughes turned in the team’s best score, finishing 1-over par. He netted three birdies as opposed to two birdies and one double bogey on the par three sixth hole.

Page said he was disappointed because of some “very sloppy” play by his team.

Senior John Hahn was disqualified in the second round because of an improper scorecard.

The third round didn’t get any better for the Flashes. The team finished the third round 6-over par.

Pendrith and Hahn both shot 1-over par while Hughes and freshman Corey Conners finished 2-over par. Freshman Kevin Miller finished 4-over par in the third round.

The Flashes are off until 2011 when the team travels to Lafayette, La., to compete in the Louisiana Classics on March 7 and 8.

Contact Brad Tansey at [email protected].