Top Rutgers golfer departs after four years
All paths have must have a finish.
After competing for the Rutgers men's golf team over the course of four seasons, Jacob Stockl has reached the destination every student-athlete strives to reach: graduation day.
Stockl will don his cap and gown along with fellow Class of 2015 students for graduation ceremonies at High Point Solutions Stadium on Sunday, May 17.
The Scarlet Knights ended their season at the Big Ten Championship in Indianapolis, Indiana, on April 26. The tournament also marked Stockl’s final event as a Knight.
Rutgers finished in 14th place at the four round tournament with a team total of 1274. The Knights had a rough going the first two rounds, shooting scores of 328 and 322.
The team improved and played well in the rounds three and four with totals of 312 in both rounds.
Stockl had a similar track record with his team at the Big Ten Championship. He struggled in rounds one and two, but put up better scores in the final two rounds.
He shot a 14 over par 86 in the first round and a plus-11, 83 in round two. Stockl played some of his best golf of the year in rounds three and four.
By shooting a plus-one 73 in the third round and a four over par 76 in round four, Stockl greatly assisted Rutgers with his efforts. As a result, he and his teammates were able to conclude the Big Ten Championship with a respectable score.
Stockl finished in 62nd place as an individual with a plus-30, 318.
“This week, I thought I played a lot better the last two rounds,” Stockl said after the Big Ten Championship. “I think we all played a lot better the last few rounds. I felt like we all just stepped up to the plate and played the games we’re capable of playing and we all know that we’re really good players. We know that we have the ability to compete with the best teams out there. This week, we didn’t play as well as we could have, but we all have the ability to get the job done in the future.”
Head coach Rob Shute was impressed with Stockl’s attitude, refusing to give up despite the tumultuous opening rounds at the tournament.
“Obviously, he was disappointed with the way things started just like everybody else,” Shutte said at the Big Ten Championship. “He had some high numbers in those rounds, those early rounds and he battled back with a more respectable round (on April 26) and played really solid golf (on April 27) in some of the hardest conditions. I know he played solid golf the last 36 holes, but he competed hard all the way through the finish even after the same disappointing start. He came in wanting to do well, so given those situations he competed hard.”
Stockl had one fine golf career. Stockl is from Clark, New Jersey, and attended Arthur L. Johnson High School.
During his high school years as a competitor for Crusaders golf team, Stockl earned numerous accolades. He was named the most valuable player on his team for all four years as member.
Stockl won the Union Country Tournament during his freshman, sophomore and senior seasons. He was named first team All-State by the Newark Star Ledger and second team All-State by the publication during his senior year.
Stockl graduated from Arthur L. Johnson High School in 2011 and enrolled at Rutgers to compete on the banks. He saw some playing time right that fall and had a stroke average of 77.80 which is remarkable for a freshman golfer. In the fall of 2012, Stockl earned two top-ten finishes.
At the Rutgers Invitational, he finished in 10th with a score of 220 and placed ninth at the Waterville Collegiate Classic. In Stockl’s junior season, he won the Rutgers Invitational with a minus-four 138 to earn the victory.
In his final season on the banks, Stockl was the lone senior among the Knights in his team. The burden of being the leader of the team was now on his shoulders. S
Stockl did a fine job, letting his play lead by example.
Stockl was named Big Ten Golfer of the Week twice this past season and helped guide his team to several solid finishes. Rutgers earned fourth place at the Princeton Invitational on April 12, as Stockl put up a score of 151 and finished in 27th place.
The Knights earned a top-three finish at the Rutherford Invitational the following week on April 19 by compiling a score of 886. Stockl shot a plus-10 223 to finish 20th in the standings.
Graduating with a degree in Labor Studies and Employment Relations, the final chapter on Stockl's career at Rutgers comes to a close.
“It’s pretty wild looking back on it,” Stockl said reflecting on his four-year career after the Big Ten Championship. “I mean, it’s been a great four years. I wouldn’t want to change anything and I’ve learned a lot as a person, as an athlete, and as a student. I know that I’ll continue to open the next chapter of my life and it’s sad yeah, definitely but, I’ll just open a new chapter in my life and I can always grow from it.”
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