May 28, 2009
TOLEDO, OH – The University of Iowa men’s golf team completed the third and final round of stroke-play competition at the 2009 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships, Thursday. With teams forced to fit in a round 27 holes due to Wednesday’s thunderstorms, a handful of teams were not able to complete their third round and will not finish out their round tomorrow. Enough of the top teams were able to finish today, that the eight-team match-play bracket is set to begin Friday morning. Top-seeded Oklahoma State played true and finished on top with an 849 (-3). The 30th-seeded Hawkeyes carded an incredible final round of 290 (+6) to finish 17th with a 54-hole total of 887 (+35).
While the Hawkeyes didn’t make the cut for match-play competition, they managed to shoot their best round of the tournament in what were the most adverse conditions of the week. Sophomore Vince India led the Hawkeyes as he carded rounds of 74, 72 and 73 (+6) to finish tied for 37th. Freshman Barrett Kelpin and sophomore Brad Hopfinger both finished tied for 72nd and recorded scores of 223 (+10). In the last tournament of his Hawkeye campaign, senior Cole Peevler posted rounds of 74, 79 and a team leading 71 in the final round to finish tied for 78th. Additionally, freshman Chris Brant finished tied for 153rd with a 54-hole total of 237 (+24).
Having to finish the second round early Thursday morning, the Hawkeyes were among the bottom 15 teams forced to golf their third round in the rough afternoon conditions. Among the teams with afternoon starts, Iowa was able to pull away from top-25 teams such as #6 Stanford, #9 Florida, #14 UCLA, #16 Illinois, #17 Texas Tech, #24 Texas and #25 Chattanooga.
“It was the toughest conditions we’ve seen all week and the guys were tough as nails,” said Head Coach Mark Hankins. “Every guy stepped up and we continued to get better with each round. It shows that we’re learning and adapting to the golf course.”
Hankins also commented on the talent and leadership that Iowa’s lone senior, Peevler, brought to the team.
“He was the team leader and gave 100 percent the entire year,” said Hankins. “For him and this team to go out with an unbelievably solid round was fitting and he deserves nothing less. These guys believed in each other and it showed in our results.”
After a performance that put Iowa above 12 of the nation’s top 50 teams and every team but one in the Big Ten, Hankins pointed out that the bar has been set.
“We beat some really good teams by a lot of strokes and it definitely creates expectations,” added Hankins. “We expect to be a high-level team, and these guys are willing to put in the time it takes to make that happen.”
Also, Peevler spoke of his final round wearing the black and gold.
“Mentally, it was tough, but Coach Hankins has prepared us well and we were ready to play,” said Peevler. “I told myself on the first tee, this morning, that’d I’d enjoy this round and enjoy being with the team. I started to have fun out there and a good score came on its own.”
Additionally, India spoke about filling the leadership void after the graduation of Peevler.
“We beat some really good teams by a lot of strokes and it definitely creates expectations. We expect to be a high-level team, and these guys are willing to put in the time it takes to make that happen.”
“We know there is much room to improve,” said India. “Cole was an awesome player and a great leader. If we all step up, there’s no doubt in my mind that we can be back here next year. Summer is a great time to improve your game, and we all need to take advantage of those opportunities.”
In just his second season at Iowa, Hankins has put together a team that has been a long time coming; first regional and national tournament appearance since 1995, the best Big Ten finish in eight years, a fall tournament title at The Landfall Tradition and numerous records set. With five returning starters, it’s safe to say that things are looking up for Iowa men’s golf.
1. Oklahoma State 288-280-281=849 (-3)
2. Arizona State 294-281-287=862 (+10)
3. USC 305-281-279=865 (+13)
Arkansas 297-283-285=865 (+13)
Washington 293-286-286=865 (+13)
6. Michigan 296-285-287=868 (+16)
7. Texas A&M 298-276-295=869 (+17)
Georgia 288-285-296=869 (+17)
9. TCU 299-285-289=873(+21)
10. Georgia Tech 301-285-288=874 (+22)
UCF 300-283-291=874 (+22)
12. Tennessee 294-289-292=875 (+23)
13. San Diego 293-293-291=877 (+25)
14. Duke 297-285-296=878 (+26)
15. Alabama 298-288-293=879 (+27)
16. South Carolina 305-286-294=885 (+33)
17. IOWA 301-296-290=887 (+35)
18. Chattanooga 292-297-299=888 (+36)
19. Florida 310-287-292=889 (+37)
20. Stanford 305-298-INC=603 (+38)
21. Illinois 299-291-302=892 (+40)
22. Oregon 306-293-298=897 (+45)
23. Wake Forest 302-304-INC=606 (+47)
24. Texas Tech 303-292-305=900 (+48)
UCLA 306-295-299=900 (+48)
26. Virginia 306-297-INC=603 (+49)
Ohio State 294-310-INC=604 (+49)
28. Texas 308-300-INC=608 (+51)
29. Arizona 310-302-INC=612 (+52)
30. Northwestern 398-304-306=908 (+56)
Individual Results – Par 71 (Top 3 + Iowa)
1. Matt Hill (NC State) 69-69-69=207 (-6)
2. Kyle Stanley (Clemson) 72-71-66=209 (-4)
3. Rickie Fowler (OSU) 72-70-68=210 (-3)
Tim Glissmeye (USC) 74-70-66=210 (-3)
Tom Hoge (TCU) 70-70-70=210 (-3)
T37. Vince India (UI) 74-72-73=219 (+6)
T72. Barrett Kelpin (UI) 76-76-71=223 (+10)
T72. Brad Hopfinger (UI) 77-71-75=223 (+10)
T78. Cole Peevler (UI) 74-79-71=224 (+11)
T153. Chris Brant (UI) 80-77-80=237 (+24)