Rutgers opens season with 11th place finish at Badger Invitational
The outcome was a mixed bag of results for the Rutgers men’s golf team this week at the 2016 Badger Invitational in Madison, Wisconsin.
At University Ridge Golf Course, the Scarlet Knights finished 11th out of 13 teams with an overall score of 33-over-par, with freshman Tony Jiang scoring a one-over-par in his debut for the Knights.
While starting out the tournament with a respectable score of one-over-par, junior Matt Holuta’s second round took a turn for the worse, with him going five-over-par.
“I quadruple-bogeyed my first hole," he said. "After that, things didn’t get much better, unfortunately.”
Holuta went on to bogey another two holes, in addition to a double-bogey and a triple-bogey he scored on the 18th and sixth holes, respectively.
Senior Ryan Rose finished in 74th place overall in the field of 81 players, with a score of 19-over-par.
“This course is tough. It exposes your individual weakness, especially with the wind,” he said. “It would be awesome to improve my long game, as well as cleaning up my driving game. But that will take some time.”
This season is the first time the Knights had an offseason training program with strength and conditioning consultant Ben Shear. He will be aiming to help members of Rutgers, like Rose, to improve their game, swinging and technique out on the golf course.
Junior Toks Pedro also had a rough day, as he finished tied for 53rd place with a score of 12-over-par. The Lagos, Nigeria, native made birdie six times, with three of those coming in the final round. He will be aiming to improve his performances in future tournaments this season.
Head coach Rob Shutte was disappointed in the performance of the upperclassmen, but did take some positives from the younger players.
“We’ve been here at this course before, but the wind didn’t help," he said. "The younger guys did well though, especially Tony.”
The final participant for the Knights at the Badger Invitational, senior Michael Howe, came in at 44th place.
After a difficult first two rounds in which he scored a four and five-over-par respectively, the Temecula, California, native finished his tournament with a score or one-over-par, giving him a final score total of ten-over-par.
In the individual tournament, freshman Adam Gray finished tied for 39th with a score of eight-over-par. The Potomac, Maryland, native scored eight birdies over the 54 holes in his first tournament for the Knights. He had a total score of 224 over all three rounds.
The Knights will return to action on Sept. 25 and 26 when they travel to Glenville, Illinois for the Windon Memorial Classic hosted by Northwestern, at North Shore Golf Club.
They will be facing off against multiple colleges such as Florida, Iowa and Michigan. Afterwards, they will participate in the MacDonald Cup in New Haven, Connecticut, followed by a trip to Waterville, Ireland on Oct. 9 and 10.
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