Golf teams take second and fourth at NWC Tournament

The Whitworth men’s and women’s golf teams both competed in the Northwest Conference tournament on Saturday and Sunday. The men ended in second place and the women in fourth at the end of the first day. The second day ended with the men taking second in the tournament, but due to positioning established beforehand, ending with a first-place ranking in the conference. The women finished in third, placing them in third for conference. Willamette led at the end of the first day on the men’s side with Whitworth and Pacific Lutheran tied for second place. Willamette’s first place golfer for the day was Clark Wilson, with a score of 71. Juniors Samson Martinez and Oliver Rudnicki of Whitworth trailed with a score of 77, tying with two other golfers for fourth place. The overall standings of the match placed them in second for the day- a goal they needed to achieve in order to reach the coveted NWC title. The final tallies for the day saw Willamette at 299, Pacific Lutheran and Whitworth at 315, and George Fox at 317.

“Finishing well at conference and going to Nationals is our goal every year,” head golf coach Warren Friedrichs said of the weekend. “Which, of course, is difficult, as we end up playing until finals week.”

The next day, the men managed to successfully hold their position through the tournament, finishing in second place and claiming the 2014-2015 Conference title. The points from the Spring Classic added to their score posted from the the most recent tournament, elevating them from second place over Willamette, who won the NWC tournament overall. Martinez finished tied for sixth place after shooting a 152 cumulative score. Junior Andrew Dodge finished in eighth place with a 153- hitting a 73 for the second day. Rudnicki ended up finishing 16th with a 158. Whitworth’s totalled 618, trailing Willamette’s 613, but pulling ahead of Linfield’s 621 and George Fox’s 624. Willamette was outshot by the Pirates at the Spring Classic earlier this season, which resulted in the Bucs claiming the conference title.

“Making it to nationals was definitely our motivation,” Martinez. “We want to put Whitworth on the map. I am so excited to represent Whitworth at nationals and hope everyone knows this win was for the Whitworth community.”

On the women’s side of things, the team finished the first day in fourth, shooting a score of 335, with Whitman’s 333, Pacific Lutheran’s 325, and George Fox’s 319 all leading. Paige Henry of Pacific Lutheran led the individual scoring of the day, but Whitworth senior Nicole Lomax managed to tie for second with George Fox’s Loreece Magsanide, both boasting scores of 77. Other notables included sophomore Michal Schuster tying for 12th with a score of 83 as well as junior Yvonne LaCoursiere and freshman Katie Ochoa tying for 25th with scores of 90.

The second day yielded an even greater performance for the Bucs with the women finishing in third place in the tournament and in the conference. George Fox claimed first place with a score of 622, Whitman landed in second with a score of 653, and Whitworth finished with a score of 657.

“I think we were peeved after our performance the first day and we came out with some fire,” junior Chelsea Bayley said.

Lomax finished ninth with a score of 162, with Bayley and Schuster finishing in a four-way tie for tenth with scores of 163.

The men’s team will be moving on to Nationals, which will be held May 12-15 at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro, N.C.

 

Will Carsh

Staff Writer

Golf teams finish at the top

The men’s and women’s golf teams competed in the Northwest Conference Spring Classic tournaments this weekend, with the men’s team playing in Olympia and the women’s playing in Spanaway. The first day ended with the men’s team in first place and the women’s in second, but both ended in the top spot after the weekend ended. Of particular note was junior Samson Martinez, who led the men’s team to the top during the first day after hitting a 73, putting himself ahead of Willamette’s Ryan Kukula, who scored a 75. The difference actually led to Whitworth’s lead as a whole, as Whitworth led with a 308 against Willamette’s 310 after the first day.

“I owe my success to the support of God, my family and friends,” Martinez said, adding that his eagle on the par-five 14th hole was the highlight of his whole weekend.

The women’s team ended up in second place after the first round, with three players in the top ten. Junior Chelsea Bayley and sophomore Michal Schuster tied for fourth place along with three others with a score of 79, while senior Nicole Lomax landed in eighth with an 80. George Fox led the first round overall with a score of 317, with Whitworth at 322 and Whitman at 323.

The second day proved even better for both teams, with the men finishing in first with an even more sizable lead, and the women’s team tying for first place. Though Linfield ended up with the highest scoring individual overall on the men’s side, Whitworth ended up increasing their lead as a team, ending the day with a 300 and a tournament total of 608, as opposed to Pacific Lutheran’s 310 and 625 and Willamette’s 316 and 626. The women’s team jumped ahead of George Fox with a day score of 307. However, Whitman ended up playing a 306 that resulted in both the Missionaries and the Bucs getting a 629 total, tying for first above Fox’s 631.

Martinez ended up finishing the tournament in second place, as did Bayley.

“We did a really good job of staying in the moment and taking one shot at a time instead of just thinking about the final score,” Bayley said in regard to Whitworth’s comeback.

“We worked together and gave each other great advice during the round. We were also really positive, which helps out a ton,” junior Tyler McQuilkin said.

Both teams play again April 25-26 in Sunriver, Oregon for the NWC Tournament.

 

Will Carsh

Staff Writer

Golf wins before rain

The first day of the Lewis & Clark Invitational ended with both the men’s and women’s teams in first place and contained notable performances. Junior Oliver Rudnicki led the team with a score of 69, while junior Andrew Dodge, junior Austin Billeter, sophomore Jamie Carroll and Junior Samson Martinez all contributed with scores of 76, 81, 82 and 84, which all led to a Whitworth lead of 304 over Pacific Lutheran University, Willamette University, Linfield College, George Fox University, Pacific University and Lewis & Clark College. On the women’s side, freshman Katie Ochoa and junior Chelsea Bayley held the first and second place with scores of 79 and 80 respectively, with senior Nicole Lomax’s 83, sophomore Michal Schuster’s 86, and junior Cindy Tapia’s 94 also being of particular note and contributing to Whitworth’s 328 at the end of the first day.

“I’ve hit in the 70s before, but doing it in a college tournament means so much more,” Ochoa said on her victory last weekend.

However, the tournament was cancelled due to poor weather conditions on the second day, meaning that the first day’s scores ended up being final.

“We were fortunate enough to come out strong and end the first day ahead,” Rudnicki said.

Indeed, the weather conditions were prevalent even on the first day, testing the team’s abilities greatly. Despite the circumstances, Whitworth excelled.

“We had a lot of fantastic performances today,” head coach Warren Friedrichs said in reflection upon the tournament.

The Whitworth golf teams play April 3 in Walla Walla for the Whitman Invitational.

After the Whitman Invite, both teams will gear up for the NWC Spring Classic as the men look to continue their championship form from the NWC Fall Classic last semester.

 

Will Carsh

Staff Writer