Kansas places eighth in first tournament of the season
- Sep. 13, 2011
- 0 Comments
The men’s golf team competed in the Mark Simpson Invitational at the Colorado National Golf Club in Erie, Colo. on Monday and Tuesday. After the first two rounds of play, Greenwood Village, Colo. junior Alex Gutesha was tied for 15th overall after he shot a 69, one under par. He finished out his round with a consecutive birdie and eagle.
As a team, the Jayhawks finished the first round ranked ninth out of 15 teams with a two-round collective score of 589 strokes. Host Colorado finished with a team total of 560 strokes.
Gutesha led the Jayhawks with a first round score of 69 strokes. He was tied for 15th overall after the first day of play. He had a strong finish, with a birdie and eagle on each of the last two holes.
“Alex got off to a really good start and was four-under through nine holes,” said Kansas men’s golf coach Kit Grove. “He made a couple of bogeys and one more birdie, and finished up the morning round with a 69, so that’s a good way to kick the season off for him.”
Two new Jayhawks made their debuts during the tournament. Justin, Texas freshman Dylan McClure and Oneonta, Ala., freshman Paul Harris were ranked in the top 100 players after the first two rounds. McClure posted a team-low 72 at the end of the second round and Harris shot a 75 and tied at the end of the first day. McClure tied for 48th.
“Dylan’s a grinder, which is good,” said Grove. “You need that in your No. 4 and No. 5 golfers. You need them to keep plugging away and keep fighting. There are always those first tournament jitters as a freshman, so for him to come back and shoot even par in the afternoon, I was quite pleased with that.”
“We did a lot of things good today, but we made a lot of mistakes,” said Grove. “I know it’s `early in the year,’ but these guys play golf every day.”
On the second day of play, Kansas gained some ground on the competition. While Gutesha struggled on Tuesday, the team made up for lost ground and moved up one spot in the standings to place eighth out of 15 teams. Semi Valley, Calif., junior Chris Gilbert, played very well for the Jayhawks.
“I was a lot happier today compared to yesterday. My putting was under control and I finished off my round pretty well today,” said Gilbert. “The greens were pretty fast compared to yesterday, and that’s not what I’m used to, but I adjusted and finally got it going.”
When he was asked if he was happy with his play, he responded that he was happy, but not satisfied.
Coach Grove was pleased with how his team played throughout the tournament.
“We got better and better each day. We didn’t have any great rounds, but any time you shoot under par, you have to be pretty pleased with that. Overall, eighth is not what we’re striving for, but when it’s all said and done, I think it was okay,” said Grove.
The Jayhawks will host the Kansas Invitational, the only home tournament of the season, here in Lawrence at the Alvamar Golf Club, starting Monday Sept. 19.
Edited by Stefanie Penn