Golfers secure top 10 finishes

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The men’s and women’s golf teams each carded top-10 performances this past weekend.

The women’s team competed at the Ferris State University Bulldog Fall Preview at Katke Golf Course in Big Rapids. The team had a decent showing at the Friday-Saturday tournament on a par-72 course that played 5,811 yards.

Squaring up against a sizeable field, the Lady Cards finished tied for seventh, posting consistent rounds of 319 and 320 to total 639. Grand Valley State’s squad dominated the field, posting a total score of 602.

Northern Michigan freshman Karissa Guthrie won the individual portion of the contest, shooting low scores of 74-72 to finish two strokes over par. Sophomore Sabrina Coffman led the Cardinals individually with a total score of 152, featuring a second-round 73, good enough to break the program’s lowest single-round score by three strokes. Coffman’s finish was good enough to tie for eighth.

“I kept bogeys to a minimum and didn’t make any doubles, and when I did make a bogey, I would follow up with a birdie most times,” Coffman said. “I was sticking shots pretty close and made a few putts.”

While the SVSU women’s team may not have landed the team performance they had hoped for, the team had a front-row view of the same golf course they could be returning to for the Division II Super Regional tournament in May, should they qualify.

“If we can qualify, then this weekend will prove really helpful, especially with seeing the greens, as they are tricky to read and putt on,” Coffman said. “Being able to play there really gives us a feel for the course that you really can’t get any other way.”

Other key contributors included sophomores Alexa Marston (81-80, 161, T-27) and Shelbe Cahill (78-83, 161, T-27).

“Everyone did well on keeping scores lower and not letting their struggles get to them,” Coffman said. “Instead, everyone grinded through trouble to make sure they posted a decent score.”

The men’s team traveled to South Haven to play in the GLIAC North Invitational at HawksHead Links Golf Course. The Cardinals were looking to bounce back after giving away a mid-tournament lead to Grand Valley at their home invitational last weekend.

After the first round of play on Saturday, the team found themselves in fourth place with a score of 291. Team captain and senior Ryan Peruski, who led the Cardinals for much of last year and last weekend, shot 5-over 77, nine strokes behind SVSU senior Austin Carter, who was tied for the individual lead after the first round. Redshirt freshman Gunnar Stein also had a great opening round, shooting 2-under par 70 in the third collegiate round of his career.

As a team, SVSU shot 293 to finish with a two-day score of 584, which was good enough to get etched in at third place. Wayne State won the Invitational with a total 7-under par 569.

Individually, Carter shot even-par on the day to finish at 140, a score high enough to give up the lead and finish tied for third, two strokes behind Wayne State’s Brendan Seys, who was the low-scoring individual. Stein had another good outing, also shooting par on the day, to get a T-5 finish with 172 strokes. The two shot well enough over the weekend to earn All-Tournament team honors.

Head coach Joe Vogl feels that, although a third place finish is a fine finish, there is more for the men’s team to be accomplished.

“We still aren’t clicking as a team,” Vogl said. “We are playing well, but we’ve got a few guys struggling right now. We have plenty of time to straighten out.”