CARMEL, Indiana — The 38th-ranked University of Iowa men’s golf team is tied for first place following the first round of the Big Ten Championships. The Hawkeyes and No. 11 Illinois are five strokes ahead of third place Penn State.
Play was difficult on Friday as heavy winds gusted above 20 miles per hour for most of the afternoon. The Hawkeyes persevered with three golfers positioned in the top 10 to get the team off to a hot start at Crooked Stick Golf Course.
Fifth-year senior Alex Schaake is in second place on the leaderboard at even-par 72 through 18 holes. Schaake was the model of consistency, shooting an even 36 on each nine.
He is joined in the top 10 by sophomores Garrett Tighe and Mac McClear. Tighe shot a 1-over par 73 on the day that tied him for third place, while McClear rounds out the top 10 for Iowa, tying for seventh with a 74 (+2).
It has been a team effort thus far for the Hawkeyes; four Iowa players combined for the team’s 12 birdies with three apiece (Schaake, Tighe, McClear, and senior Jake Rowe).
Iowa is chasing the program’s second team championship at the event (1992).
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HEAR FROM HEAD COACH TYLER STITH
“We like where we are at. We had three very good scores today. Tomorrow we need to get everyone going.”
- Iowa is second in the field in birdies (12) and pars (51).
- Garrett Tighe is making just his second start in the Iowa lineup this season; his 4.0 stroke average on par fours ties for the second best among all competitors.
- Iowa’s 4.3 stroke average on par fours is the second best in the field.
Iowa will be paired with Illinois and Penn State — with tee times starting at 8:45 am. (CT) — in Saturday’s second round of the Big Ten Championships. The final round of competition will take place on Sunday.