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Men’s golf takes fifth in Iverness

Mike Gilloon | Monday, September 13, 2004

The Irish opened up their 2004-05 campaign showing lots of promise of good things to come. The team placed fifth in the Inverness Intercollegiate in Toledo, Ohio with a 3-round score of 894. No. 14 Kentucky won the event, shooting an 877, eight strokes better than Michigan State, its closest competitor in the 13-team field.

This weekend, the Irish had both their best single round as well as their highest placement in the history of this event. Before this weekend, the Irish had never placed higher than 14th, and their lowest single-round score was 307, a mark they surpassed in every round.

“I’m very pleased, we haven’t fared too well at these [events] in the past,” Irish coach John Jasinski said. “We talked about breaking 900; the conditions were perfect, and we maxed out our expectations.”

Juniors Scott Gustafson and Eric Deutsch led the Irish this weekend, tying for 17th with a 10-over par 223. Sophomore Cole Isban tied for 26th after finishing the weekend with a 226. Freshman Greg Rodgers and junior Mark Baldwin rounded out the Irish lineup, shooting 228 and 234, respectively.

Isban was one of the few Irish golfers who competed this summer on a national level, something Jasinksi wants his players to do more of in the future.

“Our long-term goal is to have us compete against the very best collegiate and amateurs during the summer,” Jasinski said. “We are slightly less than halfway there right now. We need seven or eight players to try and play in the best amateur events to continue to grow competitive,”

Jasinski was especially pleased with the consistency his team displayed throughout the weekend. In Saturday’s round, four of the team’s five golfers all carded rounds of 4-over-par 75.

“That’s been our biggest weakness in the past, not being able to establish a consistent pattern,” Jasinski said. “We seem to be developing our ability to do that.”

With the team’s depth and the lack of a true No. 1 star on the team, consistency will be what will make or break the team’s season this year.

“We seem to have a lot of guys who can be competitive at this level, but we don’t have anyone who can really be force in the No. 1 spot,” Jasinski said. “We do have seven or eight guys who can all contribute in a role.”

Despite not having a definite on-field leader, Jasinski feels very confident in his team’s chances this season.

“We don’t have a star, but there’s a lot of parity in this lineup – you can win either way,” Jasinski said. “The way we performed this week is something we expect every week. Fifth place should be something we do regularly, and we should look to winning or getting top three.”