Weather, poor play costs Rutgers at Maryland Invitational
After a strong second round showing in the Maryland Invitational on Tuesday, which was the second-best team total, the Rutgers men’s golf team was poised for a strong finish.
But worsened conditions along with poor play cost the Scarlet Knights in the third and final round, finishing tied for sixth place in the 12-team tournament at the Woodmont Country Club’s par-72, 7,250-yard golf course in Rockville, Maryland.
Given the outcome, head coach Rob Shutte felt the Knights were capable of more.
“The first impression is that the guys are disappointed we did not win. It’s always the goal to be in contention going into the final round and having a chance to win,” Shutte said. “We had an outside shot to do that in fourth place going into the final round. Certainly the conditions were the most difficult in the final round. However, [the] overall performance moved us down the leaderboard, which is certainly disappointing.”
The finish saw Rutgers tied with Navy, scoring a 902 (+38). Host school Maryland and in-state rival Loyola University – Maryland finished first and second, respectively, with an impressive showing, shooting scores of 868 (+4) and 873 (+9).
George Mason’s Kyle Hart won for individuals, shooting an impressive two-under par for the tournament in the 75-player field.
Junior Jonathan Chang led Rutgers, pacing the team throughout to finish tied for ninth.
His strong play included a strong final round, where Chang scored a 70, a significant five strokes better than his day one performance.
“We again saw very consistent play from Jonathan Chang,” Shutte said.
Senior Jacob Stockl was on pace with Chang early on, shooting a 75 to tie for 21st individually in the first round.
The veterans kept Rutgers in contention entering rounds two and three tied for ninth overall.
Unfortunately for the Knights, round two was postponed until Tuesday due to heavy fog. A heavy burden was put on all the teams competing in the tournament, which were forced to play without rest between the second and final rounds.
Improving weather conditions on the second day impacted Rutgers’ performance. The Knights posted a second-best team total in round two with a 290, tying them for fourth place entering the third and final round.
But by Tuesday’s end the final scorecard revealed an unpleasant result for the Knights.
This was most notable for Stockl, the former Big Ten Golfer of the Week, who finished the tournament in disappointing fashion tied for 40th posting 75,78 and 77, respectively.
Although Rutgers struggled in the final round, freshman Toks Pedro made a big statement, finishing the tournament tied for 24th overall after posting scores of 75, 72 and 78, respectively, for an overall score of 225 which was second-best on the Rutgers squad.
“We are starting to see freshman Toks Pedro break out and reach his full potential,” Shutte said.
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