The University of Iowa men’s golf team travels to Baltimore, Maryland, this week for the Big Ten Championships. The three-day, 54-hole event will be played at Baltimore Country Club’s East Course beginning Friday, April 27.
Round 1: Friday, April 27 — 8 a.m. (CT) off holes No. 1 and 10
Round 2: Saturday, April 28 — 8 a.m. (CT) off holes No. 1 and 10
Round 3: Sunday, April 29 — 7 a.m. (CT) off holes No. 1 and 10
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.
Twelve other Big Ten schools, including four teams inside the top 39 of Golfstat’s national rankings, are competing with Iowa in the conference tournament: No. 13 Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, No. 35 Northwestern, No. 39 Penn State, No. 36 Purdue, Rutgers, and Wisconsin.
Founded in 1989, the Baltimore Country Club calls home to 3,000 members and was recognized as one of the 100 “Most Prestigious Clubs in the World” by LINKS Magizine. At 7,181 yards from the championship tees, the par-70 East Course has back-to-front pitched greens, limited water, and 96 bunkers. The course is listed as the best classic or modern course in the state of Maryland and has hosted a Men’s U.S. Open, a PGA Championship, and a U.S. Walker Cup, to name a few.
For a second straight week, Iowa’s lineup will have Alex Schaake manning the one spot, followed by Matthew Walker, Alex Moorman, Sam Meuret, and Benton Weinberg.
COACH STITH’S COMMENTS
“We’re coming off our two best performances of the spring. We played a good final round at the Kepler. All five guys had moments this past week. Matthew (Walker) was able to put together three good rounds and finished sixth. Everybody chipped in. Everybody contributed. The way we’ve scheduled the last few years, we’re always trying to peak at this time of year. We have had success the last three years at Big Tens; back-to-back runner-ups and then fourth last year. The guys are confident and feel like they are playing their best golf of the spring. Having two guys going that played last year, and both play well, helps out, too.”
Iowa tied for fourth in last year’s Big Ten Championship with a 54-hole total of 858 (+18; 294, 288, 276). The Hawkeyes jumped three spots in the final round with a four-under-par performance. As a freshman, Alex Schaake tied for 29th due to a bogey-free, four-under par final round. Matthew Walker tied for 19th at five-over-par, while Jack Simpson tied for 16th. Iowa finished second in 2015 and 2016, including a medalist finish from Carson Schaake in 2015.
LAST TIME OUT
In the regular season wrap-up, the Hawkeyes placed sixth — their second-best finish of the spring — at Ohio State’s Robert Kepler Intercollegiate. Iowa improved in every round and of the five teams ahead of them, four were ranked inside the top 42 of Golfstat’s national rankings. Matthew Walker (T-6) was Iowa’s top finisher at one-over-par, followed by Alex Schaake (T-21) at six-over-par. Alex Moorman had a nice finish to the tournament, recording a bogey-free 30 on the back nine of the third round with five birdies.
LEADER IN THE CLUBHOUSE
Sophomore Alex Schaake has been Iowa’s top finisher in four of Iowa’s five stroke-play events in the spring. Schaake went 2-2 at Big Ten Match Play, followed by a third-place finish at the 36-hole Southern Intercollegiate. He tied for 12th at the Schenkel Invitational after carding a season low 18-hole score of 67 in the second round with seven birdies. Schaake then turned in two rounds at or below par to finish second in the Hawkeye Invitational. Schaake has been Iowa’s most consistent player this season, leading the team in 18-hole scoring average (71.71), top-10 finishes (4), and rounds at or below par (12).
SCHAAKE’S FOUR TOP-FIVE FINISHES
Schaake added his fourth top-five finish to his resume with a second-place finish at the Hawkeye Invitational on April 13-14. His first came at the Golfweek Conference Challenge with a second-place finish in September. His low scoring continued at the Windon Memorial Classic in October where he tied for fifth. The fall success carried over into the spring where Schaake finished third at the Southern Intercollegiate.
MOORMAN’S CAREER DAY AT THE HAWKEYE INVITATIONAL
Moorman finished in a career-best third place at the Hawkeye Invitational at Finkbine Golf Course on April 13-14. Moorman’s first round was nothing short of spectacular, registering seven birdies, including five in an eight-hole stretch. His first-round 68 was tied for the third lowest score of the tournament. He eagled the last hole of the second round with a long putt to finish at three-under-par (141).
CLIMBING THE LEADERBOARD
- Six Hawkeyes — Ryoto Furuya, Sam Meuret, Alex Moorman, Alex Schaake, Matthew Walker, and Benton Weinberg — have competed in at least 17 rounds.
- Schaake has 12 rounds at or below par, followed by Walker’s 10 rounds at or below par. As a team, the Hawkeyes have carded 47 rounds at or below par.
- Schaake leads the team in 18-hole scoring average at 71.71. Walker is second on the team averaging 72.82 strokes-per-round, followed by Furuya’s average of 73.71.
- Schaake, Weinberg, and Moorman have carded 67s for Iowa’s low 18-hole score of the season.
- Five Hawkeyes have at least one top-20 finish, while Schaake, Walker, and Moorman have at least one top-10 finish on the year.
WALKER THRIVES IN MATCH PLAY
In this year’s Big Ten Match Play Championships, junior Matthew Walker won three out of four individual matches to improve his career match play record to 10-2. He went 4-0 as a freshman, making him one of only six golfers to do so for the tournament. In back-to-back years, Walker finished 3-1 to have only two career losses on his career resume.
LINK UP WITH THE HAWKEYES
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