Notre Dame comes home for Battle at the Warren
Dominic Iannelli | Friday, April 15, 2016
This Saturday, Notre Dame will finally get a chance to compete on its home course.
The Irish will take part in the Battle at the Warren (BATW) at Notre Dame’s Warren Golf Course. The tournament will involve 36 total holes and will take place this Saturday. Irish head coach Jim Kubinski said that single day tournaments like the Battle at the Warren are not common in college golf.
“Single day tournaments are rare,” Kubinski said. “We created this one to fit a window in our schedule, the days of which are limited by NCAA rule. I think it will serve us well, though. 36 holes on our Warren, competing against capable teams is a great test within our window.”
The Irish are coming off an eighth place finish at the Clemson Invitational out of a total of 12 teams playing. Kubinski said the whole team was disappointed with the low finish.
“I think the biggest thing I took from Clemson was that our team was very disappointed with finishing eighth of the 12 competing,” Kubinski said. “Most of the season, we haven’t been focused on results as much as on growing. We’ve been working through a process, a time when a lot of young players are developing in many ways. Those players are now at the point when they expect more in the results column.”
The event will only consist of three teams: Notre Dame, Canisius College, and University of Detroit-Mercy. Though Canisius and Detriot-Mercy are well-known programs, Kubinski said that they will still provide tough competition.
“The Battle at the Warren was created to bridge any gaps between competitive opportunities in late March or early April and our end of April conference championship, whether the Big East in years past or the ACC now,” Kubinski said. “Our last BATW was in 2012, when we hosted Illinois State, Marquette, Evansville and Bradley and won by 36 shots. This is Canisius’ first visit to ND and, I believe, [Detriot-Mercy’s] second trip. We’re excited for the challenge this weekend. Whether large or small, all Division I schools have accomplished golfers, so we’ll need to play well from start to finish on Saturday.”
Notre Dame also hosts an annual tournament in the fall at the Warren. Known as the Fightin’ Irish Golf Classic, the tournament hosts 12-15 teams on average, as opposed to the 3-4 teams that play at the Battle at the Warren. Kubinski said playing on their home course will certainly give the Irish an edge.
“There’s definitely an advantage to playing a home golf course,” he said. “We did a great job in September here at home, during our Fightin’ Irish Golf Classic, so there’s a comfort level for our team this weekend. We know how the holes are best played, for each player individually, which simplifies preparation. All that said, home or away, tournaments come down to executing shots. Our focus will be on executing.”
The weather is predicted to be as nicer than it has been in months in South Bend, a sharp contrast to the snow and freezing rain experienced in past few weeks. Kubinski said the course will be in great shape despite the extended winter, praising course superintendent Matt Cielen.
“The golf course is in excellent shape,” he said. “Matt Cielen, an unsung hero over here for many years, and his crew have worked tirelessly in preparation. They’ve cut and rolled our greens twice already this week, which should see them rolling at 10.5 or so on the stimp by Saturday. That’s a significant speed for this area in April. There won’t be much rough to speak of, given the time of year, but our golf course will still be a solid test. We’ll play it as a par 71 at over 7,000 yards.”
Play for the Battle at the Warren is scheduled to begin at 9:10 a.m. Saturday.