Men’s golf starts 2021 fall season with fourth place finish

Kathryn Rajnicek Reporter

Kent State’s men’s golf team finished in fourth place out of 14 teams at the Gopher Invitational on Sunday and Monday.

“I thought we handled the whole weekend really well,” coach Jon Mills said. “It’s a tough golf course to come into for the first event of the year.”

The University of Minnesota hosted the tournament at Windsong Farm Golf Club in Independence, Minnesota. 

After the first day of play, the Flashes sat in fourth place at three under par shooting a 565 in the first two rounds of play.

Junior Cade Breitenstine and graduate student Josh Gilkison sat two shots behind the lead in the first two rounds. Both shot 3-under 171 and were in a three way tie for sixth place after the first day. 

In Monday’s final round of play, KSU shot a 284 third round to claim the fourth place spot. Overall, the team had a 3-under 849 tournament.

“As a team, it was just a matter of getting back to competition and traveling,” Mills said. “You work hard but you never really know what to expect until you get into competition.”

Gilkison finished second individually carding 5-under 66 in round three and 8-under 205 overall in the tournament. He finished two strokes behind first place sophomore Luke Kluver of Kansas University. 

“I think that shows just how prepared and motivated he is coming into this year,” Mills said. “He played awesome and to come that close to getting his first collegiate win was pretty exciting. I hope he uses that as a momentum going into the rest of the events this fall.”

Along with Gilkison, Breitenstine and senior Julien Paltrinieri finished in the top 20 individually placing 13th and tied for 18th respectively.

Freshman Bryce Reed finished tied for 45th place individually in his first collegiate tournament, and junior Jack Doody rounded out the Flashes individual scoring tied for 69th place.

“I think [Reed] did great on that kind of golf course,” Mills said. “He was a big part of us playing well in that second round. He was the only one on the team that shot under par and that was huge for us. To get that out of a freshman is really important and will do a lot for his confidence.”

The team will be back in action on Sept. 27-28 at the Windon Memorial, hosted by Northwestern at the Lake Shore Country Club in Glencoe, Illinois. 

“I’m very happy with how they played and am excited to keep working hard and get back to our next event,” Mills said.

Kathryn Rajnicek is a reporter. Contact her at [email protected]