Freshman Leads Golf

The men’s golf team finished sixth overall, in a nine team field, at the Tuxedo Autumn Invitational hosted by Columbia University this past weekend.

On a difficult course that consisted of very firm and fast greens, the Hawks shot 80 over par as a team, with a total score of 932. The 932 score was only eight strokes behind the third place finisher of the tournament, Lehigh University.

Head Coach Dennis Shea thought his team played well, but realized they have the potential to play even better. “Overall, I think we played relatively well. The course played a little tough, especially around the greens, and I thought par could have been around 74,” said Shea. “Unfortunately, we just aren’t consistent enough right now. Everyone’s going to have some bad swings and shots, but we need to cut out some of the mental mistakes.”

Despite the sixth place finish, MU did have several strong moments, including shooting a 297 in the second round of the tournament. The score was the lowest round of any team, and only one of two sub-300 rounds at the Invitational. Central Connecticut State, who finished fourth and were seven strokes better than the Hawks, had the other sub-300 at 298, which also came in the second round of the tournament.

“I was very happy with the 297,” said Shea. “We had already played 18 holes earlier in the day, and I think those first 18 helped everyone get a feel of the course, and they really took advantage of that experience in the second round.”

Freshman Mariano Medico was another bright spot for the Hawks. Medico shot a 229 on the weekend, which was good enough for 14th overall individually. It was Medico’s first top-20 finish on his young career.

Shea was excited about the success the freshman had in what was only his second collegiate tournament. “I was pleased with the way he (Medico) played,” Shea said. “It’s obviously a good thing for the future of this program, and I think he has a very promising career ahead of him.”

Senior Brady Goodling also finished in the top 20 for MU with a 54-hole total of 232. Goodling got off to a bit of a tough start with a first round 82, but bounced back with a second round 72 and third round 78. Sophomore Jesse Hazam finished just two strokes behind Goodling with a 234. Hazam was extremely consistent with his play as he shot rounds of 78, 79, and 77. Junior Kyle Deisher finished with a 237 mark, with rounds of 83, 73, and 81, and freshman Chase Makowski rounded out the Hawks’ scorecard shooting rounds of 85, 82, and 84 to finish with a 251 total overall.

Columbia University took home its own tournament title with a 905 overall score. Other schools who took part in the Invitational were Hofstra University, second, Lafayette College, fifth, Bucknell University, seventh, Manhattan College, eighth, and the University of Massachusetts- Lowell, who finished ninth at 110 over par.

Goodling was the only senior to play in the tournament for the Hawks, and three of the five team members were underclassmen. Being so young, Shea is happy with how the team played, but he is hoping for improvement as the season progresses.

“I’m pleased with where we are right now, and have no complaints,” said Shea. “We have a lot of talent on this team. Now we just have to put it all together.”

However, Shea knows that it will be tough in future competitions. “Right now, Northeast golf is about as competitive as it has ever been,” he explained. “Now, under normal weather conditions, it takes rounds of about 300 or lower to really be in the hunt. I know we have the talent to do it, we just need to work towards being more consistent in our play.”

The Hawks get right back to action this coming Sunday when they travel to Apalachin, NY to take part in the Binghamton Invitational. The tournament tees of at 8 am, and will be held at the Links of Hiawatha Golf Course.

After the Binghamton Invitational, the blue and white will travel for one more tournament in PA, before finally getting to play with home course advantage at the Deal Country Club for their annual Monmouth Quad match between Lafayette, Farliegh Dickinson, and Rider University.