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Wind plays factor in golfers’ performance

Eric Retter | Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Tuesday was a good day for the Irish contingent at the Eastern Illinois Invitational. All five Irish players, competing as individuals, had strong days on the tournament’s final day.In an event plagued with wind and bad weather, the Irish players seemed to get better as the weather got worse, while other teams struggled to control their shots.”Weather separates average players from good players, and it takes a lot of guts and resolve [to play the way we played],” said assistant coach Chris Whitten.The wind played such a factor over the course of the event that the winning individual score didn’t even break par, coming in 3-strokes-over at 219.Leading the Irish delegation were senior co-captain K.C. Wiseman and sophomore Adam Hoyer, both of whom shot a three-round total of 223 and tied for third. Hoyer, a transfer from the University of Florida, was competing in his first event as a Notre Dame student, having just earned a roster spot in practice the week before the event. Sophomore Adam Gifford was close behind them, breaking the top 10, finishing in ninth place. Senior Steve Colnitis and junior Federico Salazar both had strong final rounds to make up for somewhat disappointing Mondays. Salazar, who was in 50th at the start of the final round, shot a 74 and moved up substantially in the standings. Similarly, Colnitis, who also struggled in the first two rounds, shot a 77 to improve his positioning.While Whitten is pleased with the way his players performed, he sees now as the time for the guys who competed in the Eastern Illinois Invitational, dubbed as a “JV event,” as well as the rest of the team, to work on getting some good practice while the weather is still pleasant.”This is time to improve in their game, rather than just maintain where they are, and to put in some good practice time,” he said.The Irish will have to practice hard in the next weeks, as the team heads off to Stanford University to compete in the Nelson Invitational against some very strong competition of Oct. 23-24. Despite the fact the players that competed this weekend did not represent the Irish, the team roster has not been solidified and there is a possibility of guys working their way into it.”I wish we were in a position where sports were locked up, because the best teams in college golf don’t have a lot of fluctuation in their lineups,” Whitten said.