Men’s Golf: ‘Dogs battle back to earn Top 3 finish

Square Logo BlueThe Fresno State men’s golf team placed third at the Ram Masters Invitational earlier this week in Fort Collins, Colorado.

With playing their best three rounds of golf so far this season, the team posted a 22-over-par 862 for the three rounds at the par-70, 7,215-yard Fort Collins Country Club.

After starting off the invite a little bumpy, carding an 11-over, 291, the Fresno State fivesome looked to improve their play in order to move back up the leaderboard. The ‘Dogs went into Round 2 with a fresh mindset, posting a 6-over 286, moving them into third place following the first two rounds.

“Finishing in the top three after the first two rounds was a team goal,” interim head coach Paul Ladwig said.

Freshman Alex Lee was the most consistent player for the ‘Dogs through the first two rounds. Lee was even on both the front and back nines during Round 1 on his way to an even 70 to start off his week. He then went on to score 1-over on the front and 1-under on the back en route to another even 70 score. The freshman led the way with 21 pars and eight birdies to offset with his six bogeys and the double bogey he had through his first two rounds.

Lee and his teammates were able to maintain their solid play during Round 3 and were able to post their best round of the week, finishing with a 5-over 285 for the final round, securing their third-place finish.

Junior transfer Trevor Clayton led the way for the ‘Dogs in Round 3, posting his best score, 1-under 69. The Clovis High graduate carded a first round 73 and a 71 for Round 2. With his 69 in Round 3, Clayton was able to finish in the Top 10 for the ‘Dogs.

Lee was able to maintain his hot start, posting a 1-over 71 for Round 3 en route to another Top 10 finish for the ‘Dogs. Lee had 13 of the team’s 44 birdies at the invitational. He finished the invite in seventh place, just five shots behind the leader.

“Alex played steady golf over the 54 holes for us,” Ladwig said. “His ability to manage the golf course propelled him to his first Top 10 finish as a Bulldog.”

Colorado State took home the team title, finishing its three rounds 1-under-par (277-283-279=839). Ben Welle from the University of Kansas finished at the top of the 88-golfer leaderboard, posting a 4-under 206 for the week.

“The team battled, grew and overcame some adversity over 54 holes,” Ladwig said. “The Fort Collins Country Club was a great test for the team to put us in a position to win the Nick Watney Invitational.”

Next up for Fresno State is the second annual Fresno State Nick Watney Invitational on Oct. 5-6 at Fort Washington Country Club in Fresno. Third-year head coach Chad Spencer, who was absent from this week’s action on paternity leave, will be back to lead the team.