The UC Davis men’s golf team was feeling confident after its strong finish at the Battle of the Beach a while back.
The Aggies, however, struggled at the Oregon Duck Invitational, finishing in eighth place out of 12 teams. The finish will not likely help their national ranking, which going into the tournament last weekend was 52.
“[We] started very strong in last week’s Battle at the Beach but kind of hit the wall and finished eighth [at the Oregon Duck Invitational],” said head coach Cy Williams.
Junior Tyler Raber led the Aggies, finishing tied for 19th place in the final round to wind up one over 217, contributing to an Aggie 9-over 891 team score on Tuesday.
Freshman Matt Hansen tied for 29th overall as he shot 4-over 220 and a team best 72 in his highlight reel of a third round. Senior Austin Graham tied for 51st overall at 10-over 226 and was followed by sophomore Andrew Haggen and freshman Daniel Covrig.
Graham rebounded from a first-round 77 with a 74 in his second round before scoring a 75 to complete play Tuesday. He was at 2-over after his front nine, then remained steady through the back nine by shooting par on 8-of-9 holes. Haggen finished in a tie for 63rd at 14-over while Covrig improved on his second round score by eight strokes, carding a 76 in his final round.
Williams was proud of the team members’ individual play.
“Everyone contributed. It wasn’t our best result as a team, but we have a strong lineup and we will find ways to bounce back,” said Williams.
Top-ranked Oklahoma State won the event, finishing at 16-under, while host Oregon was second at 8-under. Washington, Oregon State and New Mexico State comprised the rest of the top-five teams. Washington’s Chris Williams received medalist honors with a 9-under 207 after shooting two sub-70 rounds.
UC Davis returns to action April 4-5 at the Cowboy Classic, hosted by Wyoming at the Talking Stick Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Williams added his congratulations to alumnus Scott Gordon as he is the second UC Davis golfer to be inducted into the UC Davis Athletic Hall of Fame. Gordon follows Jason Boyd who was inducted last year. He also congratulated alumnus Dr. Herb Jensen as he made the finals of the San Francisco City Senior Championship.
RON HOOPER can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org