Hurst captures runner-up as Wolves take fifth in Bearcat Classic

Hurst captures runner-up as Wolves take fifth in Bearcat Classic
Tuesday, March 24, 2015 | by Chas Goodwin, Athletic Communications Assistant

GREENWOOD – The Newberry College men’s golf compiled a team score of a 288 on Tuesday’s final round at the Bearcat Classic at the Greenwood Country Club to finish in fifth place, their first top five finish this season.

The Wolves completed the tournament with an 864 total score to sit just one stroke behind fourth place Clayton State. Flagler took home the crown with an 833 while Georgia College & State and Columbus State finished second and third with an 858 and 859, respectively.

Lander (865), Mount Olive (865), Georgia Southwestern (865), Belmont Abbey (868) and Erskine (869) rounded out the top 10 in a field that spanned just 19 strokes from second place to 13th place in the 17 team field.

Sebastian Barnoya of Flagler took home the individual trophy with a 13-under par 203 in the 54-hole contest. However, Tommy Hurst (Miami, Fla.) did not make it easy as he was at his heels for the entire tournament.

Hurst finished out the final 18 with a 3-under par 69 to complete the tournament with an 8-under par 208 to finish in second place individually. This is Hurst’s fifth top five finish of his career and the second, second-place finish this year as he completed the Kiawah Island Invitational tied for second back in the fall. The 208 is the lowest 54-hole score of his career, shattering his previous record of 215 a year ago.

Luke Atack (Hamilton, Canada) shot an even par in the final round to finish with a 217 total score (73, 72 and 72). His only other 54-hole tournament came in the fall at the University of North Georgia Invitational where he posted a 223 total score. His 72s tie his career low set at the UNGI and the 217 bests his previous career low by six strokes. Atack finished the tournament tied for 29th, his first top 30 finish for Newberry.

Ryan Wilkinson (Gallivants Ferry, S.C.) was two strokes behind Atack with a 219 total score (69, 75 and 75) to put him tied for 39th. His 69 in the first round is a new career low and he finished just shy of a new career 54-hole mark as he needed to drop just three more strokes to set a new best.

Spencer Skiff (Aiken, S.C.) turned in an even par to sit tied for 46th with a 220 (75, 73 and 72) but he did improve in each round throughout both days. With the three scores he boasts a new personal record as he only competed in one round in the fall, shooting a 79.

Fredrik Fossum (Levanger, Norway) carded a 78 on Tuesday to round out the Newberry lineup with a 228 total score (75, 75 and 78).

Evan DeGrazia (Thunder Bay, Canada) competed as an individual in the tournament and also set a personal best. He carded a 219 in his first career 54-hole event for the Wolves with scores of 74, 70 and 75, all of which came in under his first round of 79 back in the fall at the Kiawah Island Invitational.

“I am very, very pleased with the guys this week,” head men’s golf coach Howard Vroon stated. “We played with much better composure and maturity. Coming off the disappointment at the Ocean Course, the team has worked very hard over the past month. We were anxious to get back at it in the Lander event.”

“The guys did some things differently this week and it really made a difference in our performance,” coach Vroon said. “The result was we beat several highly ranked teams in Lander, Erskine, Mount Olive and Georgia Southwestern. We did not play great, but we just played very, very solidly and consistently for 54 holes, which is not an easy thing to do. It’s a tribute to the guys, the work they have done and their commitment to getting better and I am very, very happy for them. One of the most rewarding things in this world is to see hard work pay off.”

The Wolves will return to action next Monday and Tuesday, March 30-31, at the Barry University Buccaneer Invitational at the Normandy Shores Golf Course in Miami Beach, Fla.