BATON ROUGE, La. — The University of Iowa men’s golf team bowed out of the 2017 NCAA Championships on Wednesday afternoon, tying for 10th place finish at the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional. The Hawkeyes carded a three-day, 54-hole total of 913 (+49; 303, 312, 298).
No. 6 LSU won the event, carding an 866 (+2; 276, 296, 294). The Tiger’s Sam Burns claimed medalist honors, shooting 212 (-4; 65, 72, 75). No. 19 Duke (+10; 291, 288, 295), No. 7 Oregon (+15; 287, 301, 291), No. 18 Virginia (+17; 282, 298, 301), and No. 42 Jacksonville (+19; 294, 300, 289) will also advance to the NCAA Championships at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois later this month.
“We played better today, but we’re disappointed to end our season,” said UI head coach Tyler Stith. “We need to learn and improve from this experience. We were on the bubble back in March, but we played our best golf at the end of the season. Several different guys contributed and gained vital experience for next season.”
Competing in his final collegiate event, senior Carson Schaake led Iowa carding a 226 (+10; 75, 76, 75) to tie for 35th individually. Schaake registered 14 holes at par or better, including two birdies in Wednesday’s final round. The Omaha, Nebraska, native competed in every event for the Hawkeyes this season, notching two-tournament top-10 finishes and one top-20 finish. He was also named Iowa’s Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree.
Schaake, the 2015 Big Ten Champion, garnered first team All-Big Ten accolades in 2015. He also finished 11th at the 2016 NCAA Regionals, three strokes shy of qualifying as an individual for the NCAA Championships.
“It’s been an amazing four years,” said Schaake. “I’ve played a lot of great golf tournaments, the win at Big Ten’s my sophomore year was great. Overall, it was great to play against a lot of good college golfers and even stand up to them and beat them at some bigger golf tournaments.”
Senior Raymond Knoll rounded out his career as a Hawkeye, firing a one-under-par 71 to bring his 54-hole total to 228 (+12; 79, 78, 71). Knoll’s final round was highlighted with two birdies and only one bogey. He was one of 11 players to shoot under par in Wednesday’s final round. Knoll finished in a tie for 44th.
“Today I tried to change up my mentality around this golf course,” said Knoll. “I tried to swing through every shot and not hold back. I hit a lot of greens today and gave myself a lot of looks at birdie. I’m happy with how I finished.”
The Naperville, Illinois, native competed in every event this season and was the top finisher for the Hawkeyes four times. The two-time second team All-Big Ten honoree, captured a pair of medalist honors throughout his career. Knoll took the title at the Chechessee Creek Club Dual earlier this year, and won the 2015 GolfWeek Conference Challenge. Knoll’s 54-hole total of 205 (-11) at the 2015 GolfWeek Challenge still stands as the lowest three-round total in program history.
“Both Raymond and Carson had great Iowa careers and will be hard to replace,” added Stith.
Sophomore Matthew Walker fired and even-par 72 in Wednesday’s final round, stinging together a three-round total of 229 (+13; 77, 80, 72). Walker utilized three birdies and 16 holes at par or better today. He finished tied for 46th.
Freshman Alex Schaake carded a three-round total of 240 (+24; 72, 88, 80). Schaake finished in a tie for 65th. Freshman Jack Simpson rounded out Iowa’s lineup, posting a 54-hole total of 245 (+29; 85, 78, 82). Simpson finished tied for 69th.
Iowa competed in NCAA Regional competition for the ninth consecutive year, joining Illinois as the only other Big Ten program to do so.