This week's Missouri Valley Conference golfers of the week are Dustin Garza of Wichita State, Olivia Lansing of Drake, and Tiffany Hockensmith of Illinois State. Lansing was runnerup medalist at the Islander Spring Classic, Hockensmith led ISU in its tournament, which featured 21 teams currently ranked in the top 100. While Garza was the top Shocker finisher at the Rio Pinar Invitational.
The Wichita State men's golf team finished in 12th place at the Rio Pinar Invitational, which concluded Tuesday at the Rio Pinar Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. Dustin Garza led the Shockers with a 219 in the tourrnament. Garza finished tied for 22nd in the event, one stroke ahead of Connor McHenry who was tied for 27th with a 220. Zac Potter and Grady Pauls each carded tournament scores of 227, and finished tied for 72nd. Ty Sanders was two strokes back with a 229, good enough to finish tied for 79th. As a team, the Shockers finished 12th in the 21-team event with a tournament score of 889. Wichita State finished five strokes behind 11th-placed East Carolina, and had a two-stroke lead over 13th-placed Ohio State.Central Florida won the event by six strokes over Texas-Arlington after posting a tournament score of 851.
Led by junior Olivia Lansing (Dellwood, Minn.), the Drake women's golf team finished fourth in the 15-team Islander Spring Classic Tuesday. The Bulldogs posted their lowest score of the tournament during Tuesday's final round with a 311 to finish at 315-314-311=940 to finish just four strokes out of third place. Texas-San Antonio won the team championship with a 311-307-302=920. Lansing placed second with a 72-78-74=224 on the par-72 6,023 yard Rockport Country Club layout, finishing just one stroke behind medalist Shelly Martinez of Texas-San Antonio who fired a 76-73-74=223. Lansing had four birdies in her round. Wichita State was also at the tournament, and the Shockers were led by Krista Hrdlicka and Megan Bartlett, who both had 248.
Tiffany Hockensmith of Illinois State carded a 12-over-par 228 (81-74-73) to finish in a tie for 25th place at the Kiawah Island Classic in Kiawah Island, S.C. After two rounds of play Monday, Hockensmith was in a tie for 51st place with an 11-over-par 155 (81-74). On Tuesday’s third and final round, Hockensmith tallied a 1-over-par 73. Hockensmith led the Redbirds to a final score of 926 (320-305-301) and a tie for 14th place with Oral Roberts on the par-72. ISU defeated Valley rivals Missouri State (978), Southern Illinois (990) and Bradley (994).
Hosted by the College of Charleston and the Kiawah Island Golf Resort, the Edwin Watts/Kiawah Island Classic, comprised of 43 teams, was the largest collegiate women’s event in the country. The three-day event featured 215 players and was played at on two courses, Cougar Point and Oak Point. Of the 43 teams that participated, 21 are currently ranked in the top 100 by Golfweek.
Missouri State was led by freshman Kelsey Welber, who finished low for the team with a three-day total of 236. She placed tied for 75th in the tournament individually, improving each round 82-78-76. Freshman Alisha Matthews led the Salukis at the Kiawah Island Classic with a 242 (81-79-82). She currently leads the team in stroke average posting a 78.5 on the season. Freshman Kelly Amundrud and senior Bari Erais tied for low-round honors for the Bradley women’s golf team with final round 80’s to help the Braves to a 40th place finish
Indiana State and Evansville played in the same tournament this week. The Sycamores put together back-to-back rounds of 326 to finish in third place in the seven team field at the Birmingham Southern Ann Rhodes Shootout over the past two days at the par-71, 5,803-yard Timberline Golf Club. The event battled delays over the past two days with the first round of action forced to being completed this morning before the second round could begin. Freshman Astrid Parsson paced the Sycamores with back-to-back rounds of 79 which gave her a two-day score of 158, which was good enough to tie for 11th place. Lauren Ellerman and Emily Johnson led Evansville with identical rounds of 84 and 78 to finish 13thEvansville finished fifth in the team standings with rounds of 336 and 326. Samford University won the event, led by medalist Heather Arnold who shot 68 following an opening round 79 to finish at 5-over-par 147.