The Gustavus Men’s Golf team wrapped up its season last weekend competing in a 16-team field at the St. John’s Spring Invitational. The Gusties finished in sixth place, moving up two places in the final day of the tournament. The first round of the two-day tournament was played at Territory Golf Club in St. Cloud, while the second round was played at Monticello Country Club in Monticello.
The Gusties began the tournament with a tough first day in St. Cloud, shooting 307 as a team. This score, which was nineteen over par, put them into a tie for eighth place, 15 strokes behind St. John’s who led after day one. Junior Chris Captain led the Gusties in their opening round with a three-over-par, 75, putting him in 18th place. Senior Alex Koopmeiners shot a 76 to put him in 28th place, and freshman Ben Hauge and Senior Sam Majka were tied for 42nd with score of 78. Junior Alec Aunan rounded out the scoring for the Gusties’ top team with an 81 on the first day.
After finishing in third place the week before at the Bobby Krig Invite, this wasn’t exactly the start that the Gusties were looking for. Head Coach Scott Moe remained positive, however.
“Not the start we wanted today. That just means we need to battle right away tomorrow and set the tone for a great day,” Moe said. “We were just a little off on our putts, we burned a lot of edges, and looking for those to find the bottom of the cup tomorrow. Chris came back and was three-under par in his last seven holes.”
On day two, the Gusties did just that, cutting 13 strokes off of their total from day one. The 10-over, 294 was good enough to move the Gusties into a strong sixth-place finish. Only one of the two scheduled rounds were played on Sunday due to the miserably cold and rainy weather conditions.
In the round that they did get in, Hauge and Koopmeiners recorded Gustavus’ best scores with an even-par, 71 and two-over, 73 respectively. Captain recorded another strong round for the Gusties with a 74, meaning that the top three Gusties all tied in 20th place with a total score of 149. Sam Majka finished tied for 44th with a 154 while Alec Aunan rounded out the top five with a 54th place finish and a total score of 157. Seniors Parker Tinsley and Billy Seeberg also competed for the Gusties’ second team, recording strong scores of 164 and 174 respectively.
“We definitely played better today. We got off to a good start and made a few birdies early on,” Moe said.
As this tournament marks the end of the Gustavus Men’s Golf season, it is time to recognize the contributions of senior members. While Koopmeiners and Majka were the only seniors to contribute to the Gusties’ top team in tournaments, it is clear that each of the seniors played an important role in determining the success of the team.
“It’s always tough to finish your season, but very proud of the efforts of all the players this spring,” Moe said. “It was nice to see Majka, Koop, Parker and Billy in the lineup for our last event. They have been outstanding guys to have on the squad and will surely be missed.”
The Gusties 2016-2017 campaign was a successful one, highlighted by a third place and a second place finish in the fall before finishing as the runner-up at the fall MIAC Championships. They also achieved a strong third place finish as the hosts of the Bobby Krig Invitational this spring.
With three of the five first team players returning next year, the Gusties will look to build on their success both individually and as a team when they are back in action next fall seaon.