The University of Iowa men’s golf team begins the 2018 spring season at the tenth annual Big Ten Match Play Championship this weekend in Palm Coast, Florida, at Hammock Beach Resort, Friday and Saturday.
Round 1 vs. #3 Purdue: Friday, Feb. 9 , 8 a.m. (shotgun)
Round 2 vs. #4 Minnesota: Friday, Feb. 9, 1:15 p.m. (shotgun)
Round 3 vs. #5 Ohio State: Saturday, Feb. 10, 8 a.m. (shotgun)
Find Round vs. TBD: Saturday, Feb. 10, 1:30 p.m. (shotgun)
Teams can have an eight-player tournament roster with six players competing in each match. Matches will be scored in a win, loss, or tie fashion. An individual match win is worth one point, and a halved match is worth 1/2 point for each team. Matches ending in a 3-3 tie have a tiebreaking criteria. After the three round robin matches, teams will be ranked one through 7 in their Big Ten division, and face the team from the opposing division with the same ranking in Saturday’s final round.
FOLLOW THE ACTION
Fans can follow this weekend’s action by visiting golfstat.com for live scoring. Links can be found on the men’s golf schedule page at hawkeyesports.com.
LINK UP WITH THE HAWKEYES
For an inside look at the Iowa men’s golf program and to access exclusive coverage, “like” Hawkeye men’s golf on Facebook and follow @IowaHawkeyeGolf on Twitter and Instagram.
Big Ten West: Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue, Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Nebraska.
Big Ten East: Penn State, Michigan State, Michigan, Maryland, Ohio State, Indiana, and Rutgers.
Hammock Beach Resort calls home to two magnificent golf courses — the Ocean Course and Conservatory Course.
- The Ocean Course features six holes directly on the Atlantic Ocean with the final four holes, called “The Bear Claw,” sweeping the coastline. The Jack Nicklaus design has been a top-10 course in Florida since 2007, according to Golfweek.
- A Tom Watson Signature design and Florida’s longest with 140 sand bunkers, the Conservatory Course slightly resembles a British links-style and is ranked the 17th best course by Golfweek in 2017.
Seven Hawkeyes will be traveling to the event: Alex Schaake, Matthew Walker, Benton Weinberg, Sam Meuret, Alex Moorman, Aaron DeNucci, and Jack Simpson.
LAST TIME OUT
In Iowa’s final fall event, the Hawkeyes finished seventh at the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate in Dallas, Texas. Three golfers — Benton Weinberg, Matthew Walker, and Sam Meuret — finished inside the top 30. Weinberg’s second round 67, which tied for the best Hawkeye finish of the fall, resulted in a career-best 54-hole score of 212 (-1) to tie for a season-best 17th place. Walker tied for 26th with a 215 (+2) and Meuret tied for 29th with a 216 (+3), one stroke off his season best round.
QUOTING COACH TYLER STITH
“We talked about doing everything we can to put ourselves in a position to win. We have a chance to do something that no other Iowa team has done – we’ve never won this event. What we can control are the three matches that we have. Because of the format it’s a little unique, so we don’t completely control our destiny. What we can control is how we perform in our three matches. We’re just going to take it one match and one hole at a time. We’re trying to win each of our matches in the round robin and hopefully that will put is into the championship match.”
BIG TEN MATCH PLAY HISTORY
The Hawkeyes have finished fourth or better in four of the last five years at the Big Ten Match Play Championship. In 2015, Iowa defeated fourth-seeded Marlyand for a third-place finish via a tiebreaker. Last year, Iowa finished fourth after falling to Penn State in the semifinals due to a tiebreaker.
CAREER MATCH PLAY RECORDS
Ryoto Furuya — (1-2-0)
Sam Meuret — (2-4-1)
Alex Moorman — (0-2-0)
Alex Schaake — (2-1-1)
Matthew Walker — (7-1-0)
The Hawkeyes competed in five fall tournaments, averaging 73.63 strokes per round as a team. Iowa’s best finish came at the Golfweek Conference Challenge in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where they finished second out of 15 teams with four Hawkeye golfers finishing in the top 20 . Sophomore Alex Schaake, who finished second in the Golfweek Conference Challenge, had the lowest Hawkeye scoring average of 71.47. For the fall, seven Hawkeyes had top-20 finishes, while the team recorded 27 rounds at or below par.
CLIMBING THE LEADERBOARD
- Three Hawkeyes — Ryoto Furuya, Alex Schaake, and Matthew Walker — competed in every fall event. The trio combined for 17 rounds at or below par.
- Iowa’s low 18-hole score of the season came in the first round of the Windon Memorial Classic when they fired a 276 (-4). Schaake, Walker, and Alex Moorman carded below par rounds, while Moorman’s 67 tied for the lowest 18-hole round of the season.
- Benton Weinberg’s best performance of the season happened at Iowa’s last fall tournament in the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate when he used a career-best 54-hole score of 212 (-1) to finish a season-best tied for 17th. Weinberg’s 18-hole average of 72 was second on the team to Schaake (71.47).
WALKER IS A WORK HORSE
Junior Matthew Walker was the first true freshman to compete in every fall tournament for the Hawkeyes since Cole Peevler in 2015. In two and a half years as a Hawkeye, Walker has competed in every event dating back to his freshman year.
9 STRAIGHT NCAA APPEARANCES
Iowa has advanced to NCAA competition in each of the last nine seasons, joining Illinois as the only Big Ten teams selected to NCAA Regional competition in each of the last nine seasons. Iowa has advanced to the NCAA Championship finals three times in the last eight years (2009, 2011, 2012).
Iowa’s next event is Athens, Georgia, at the Southern Intercollegiate on Monday, March 12.