Whitman men seal up third place at PLU Invite

News Release Date:
Monday, October 15

UNIVERSITY PLACE, Wash. — With the Northwest Conference Fall Classic less than a week away, Whitman College’s men’s golf team can treat last Monday’s second round of the Pacific Lutheran University Invitational here at Chambers Bay Golf Course as pure theater.

In other words, a poor dress rehearsal makes for a good show.

Even though the weather improved during the second round of the PLU tourney — much of the first round was played in a typical Seattle downpour — the Missionaries’ play did not.

After posting a 310 team score in the rain on Sunday, a count that left the Whits alone in third place and just six strokes off the lead, Whitman couldn’t take advantage of the improved conditions on Monday. The Missionaries’ 314 second-round score put them at 624 overall, good for a share of third place with Whitworth but 29 strokes behind tourney winner Pacific Lutheran University.

The Lutes, who opened play Sunday with a 304 score, improved with the weather on Monday. Their 291 round was good for a 595 overall score and a comfortable 13-stroke margin of victory over second place University of Puget Sound, which shot 305-303—608.

Whitworth actually improved Monday as well, shooting 311 to catch the Missionaries at 324 and share third place.

Linfield shot 299 Monday, a 28-stroke improvement over Sunday’s round, and followed Whitman in the team scoring with a 626 total. Willamette shot 638 for 36 holes, followed by PLU’s junior varsity squad 653, George Fox 657, Trinity 680, Pacific University 705 and Lewis & Clark 706.

Adam Bean of Puget Sound was the individual medalist and the only player in the field of 54 to break par for the tournament. Bean followed up a first-round 73 with a 2-under-par 70 on Monday to finish at 143.

Dustin Hegge of PLU was four shots back and alone in second place at 147 following his second-round 73 and Oliver Rudnicki of Whitworth and Austin Hilkin of PLU tied for third place at 149.

Whitman’s Geoff Burks, a senior from Edmonds, Wash., skied from a 1-over 73 Sunday, which was good for a share of third place individually, to 79 Monday and finished alone in seventh place at 152. Freshman Evan Dyar of Spokane shot a steady 77-77—154 that left him in a tie for 12th place and freshman Daniel Hoffman (Los Altos, Calif.) carded a 78 Monday, a two-shot improvement over his first-round score, and finished in a tie for 18th place at 158.

Sophomore Scott Martin (Escondido, Calif.) shot back-to-back 80s and was tied for 25th place at 160. And junior Jordan Dixon (Spokane) went from 83 to 88, and his 171 left him alone in 40th place.

“When I look back on the weekend, I know that the guys worked hard at keeping their games under control,” Whitman coach Peter McClure said.

“The weather was decent Monday, just a few little cloud bursts and some swirly wind. But combine that with the toughness of Cambers Bay and you have a recipe for disaster. If you miss a shot on that course, it will cost you an extra shot — hopefully just one — to get back on track.

“We did miss a few shots,” McClure added. “But the guys hung in there and never gave up on trying to shoot the lowest score they possible could.”

The Northwest Classic, which concludes the fall season and is the only fall tournament that will count towards next springs NWC men’s and women’s golf crowns, will be played Saturday and Sunday at the Tri-Mountain Golf Club in Ridgefield, Wash., a few miles north of Vancouver.

Tri-Mountain is a lush, 6,582-yard, par-72 layout located just east of the Columbia River and in the shadows of Mount St. Helens, Mount Adams and Mount Hood.