Irish place fifth in Ireland
Observer Sports Staff | Thursday, October 29, 2015
Notre Dame traveled to Waterville, Ireland, over the break to compete in the Jerry Murray/Waterville Invitational, where it finished fifth in the six-team field.
A trio of American universities, Notre Dame, Texas A&M and UNC-Wilmington, joined a trio of Irish universities, Maynooth, Ulster and University College Dublin, to compete at the three-round event.
Over the three days, Notre Dame shot a 76-over-par 940 and posted its lowest score, a 16-over-par 304, in the first round of play Thursday.
Freshman Ben Albin led the Irish on day one with a three-over-par 75, while a pair of five-over-par 77s from juniors Matthew Rushton and Blake Barens gave the Irish three team players under the 80-stroke mark.
On day two, Rushton posted the low score for Notre Dame, an eight-over-par 80, while Barens shot a 10-over-par 82 and Albin struggled, carding a 13-over-par 85 on Friday.
Saturday’s final round saw Rushton (six-over-par 78) and Barens (seven-over-par 79) creep back under the 80-stroke mark, while Albin hit it on the nose, carding an eight-over-par 80.
Rushton’s tournament ended at 19 strokes over par, placing 18th, while Barens (22nd) and Albin (29th) finished 22 and 24 strokes over, respectively.
After a pair of 14-over-par 86 rounds Thursday and Friday, freshman Kevin Conners rebounded Saturday to shoot a final-round, five-over-par 77 to conclude his tournament.
Competing as individuals, sophomore Thomas Steve and junior Liam Cox each placed in the top 30, carding 23- and 24-over scores for the tournament, respectively, while senior Zach Toste and Jens Verhey each finished in the top 40.
Maynooth won the tournament with a team score of 904, while Texas A&M finished 12 strokes back as the top American finishing school.
Maynooth also had the tournament’s medalist, as first-year James Sugrue finished three strokes over par to win the tournament.
The trip to Ireland concluded Notre Dame’s fall season; the Irish will be back in action in February, when they travel to Dade City, Florida, for the Yestingsmeier Match Play tournament.