NWC CHAMPIONSHIP: Bruins Break Tie to Finish Alone in 6th in NWC Tournament
KENNEWICK, Wash. – Tied for sixth place after Friday’s action in the Northwest Conference Men’s Golf Championship Tournament, the George Fox University Bruins shaved one stroke off their day one score and wound up alone in sixth as the tournament concluded Saturday here at the Canyon Lakes Golf Course.
The Bruins were tied with Pacific University at 320 heading into Saturday, and shot a 319 to finish with a 639 overall score. Pacific climbed to fourth, but the Bruins’ score was enough to leapfrog them past Pacific Lutheran University anyway.
Linfield College shot a two-day score of 301-294=595 on the par 72, 6,939-yard course to win the tournament by 16 strokes over Whitworth University, which shot a 307-304=611. The University of Puget Sound was third at 311-306=617, followed by Pacific at 320-305=625, host Whitman College at 316-313=629, George Fox, Pacific Lutheran at 319-322=641, and Willamette University at 355-331=686. Lewis & Clark College had two players entered individually but no team score.
By winning on Saturday, Linfield also captured the overall NWC title and will represent the conference at the NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament May 10-13 in Greensboro, N.C.
George Fox was led by Mike Ulstad, who carded a consistent two-day score of 78-78=156 and finished in a tie for 10th in the individual standings. Aleks Gabrio had the Bruins’ best round on Saturday and wound up tied for 13th with an 80-77=157, along with teammate Kyle Wilson, who shot a 77-80=157. Trevor Pielstick shot an 85-84=169, tied for 39th. Other Bruin scores included an 88-84=172 by Chris Lumsden to tie for 41st, and a 101-92=193 to finish 48th for Joel Stude.
Alex Fitch of Linfield took medalist honors with a two-under-par 70-72=142, one stroke ahead of Pacific’s Max Bonk at 72-71=143. Yutaro Sakamoto of Linfield was third at 74-70=144, Greg Kirkpatrick of Puget Sound was fourth at 72-76=148, Jesse Salzwedel of Whitworth was fifth at 73-76=149, and Cameron Whittle of Whitworth (75-75=150) and Har Rai Khalsa of Lewis & Clark (77-73=150) tied for sixth. Those six were named to the All-Conference Team, with Fitch garnering NWC Player of the Year honors.
The NWC Championship Tournament marked the end of the season for the Bruins, who completed their fourth season of intercollegiate competition, all under head coach Matt Beck.