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WSU men's golf takes ninth place at Wildcat Invitational

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A member of the Weber State University golf team watches a shot during the Wildcat Invitational in Layton, Utah.

The Weber State University men’s golf team finished up the Wildcats Invitational with a ninth-place finish on Tuesday. The tournament was held on Monday  and continued on to Tuesday. The Wildcats were ready to compete as they had home court at the Valley View Golf Course in Layton on Monday.

WSU shot a final round of 305 and a total score of 906 to wrap up the tournament and take the ninth stop. It was a rough start for the WSU Wildcats, shooting a team total of 307 in the first round to start the tournament. They improved to a team total of 294 in the second round, with a junior, Matt Wahlen, shooting the low score of the day for WSU. Wahlen shot a three-under-par 69 in the second round to boost the Wildcats going into the third round, which continued on Tuesday.

In the third round, WSU shot a team total of 305 and finished with an overall team total of 906. Wahlen said the team was disappointed they didn’t have a better performance in their only home tournament of the year.

“This wasn’t our best tournament,” Wahlen said. “We wanted to win our home tournament.”

Sacramento State University won the tournament with the first-place finish with a total team score of 818. SSU’s top player, Cameron Rappleye, shot a 68 and a 69 in the first and second rounds, and a 75 in the third. Rappeleye’s overall score was a 212, which helped lead his team to that first-place victory.

Wildcats Michael Johnson and Wahlen led the team to their ninth-place finish, both shooting a 77 in the first round. Johnson, who is a freshman, shot a 73 and a 77 for his second and third rounds, with an overall score of 227. Wahlen shot a 69 in the second and an 82 in the third. This brought him to a total of 228 and landed him in the 40th overall spot for top players.

Wahlen said his main focus is trying to shoot a good score that will help the team.

“Our goal is really just to go out there and compete and give ourselves an opportunity to contend at these tournaments,” Wahlen said.

Alex Sutton, the only senior on the WSU golf team this season, was right behind Johnson and Wahlen. Sutton shot a 78 in the first, 76 and 75 for the second and third rounds, with an overall total score of 229.

“We struggled as a team both Monday and Tuesday,” Sutton said. “We had high expectations coming into the tournament, and none of us were really able to put together a good tournament, which was disappointing.”

Members of the team said they will continue to work hard and compete this season for Head Coach Dave Kearl. Kearl will be resigning in January as the team continues to prepare to defend their conference title in the spring.

“We will keep working hard and hopefully get a win this fall for Coach Kearl,” Wahlen said. “Hopefully we will take some positives from this tournament to our next tournament this week in San Antonio.”

The Wildcats are looking ahead to their next opponents. They will head to the Lone Star Invitational in San Antonio, Texas, this Sunday. The tournament will run until Tuesday.

The team is expecting a lot of tough competition at the tournament and is looking forward to playing against a strong field of opponents.

“The field at this next tournament is going to be really good, with many top-50 teams competing,” Sutton said. “I think it will be a great place to show how good we can be as a team.”

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