Courtesy of Ohio State athletic department
Despite a starting lineup consisting of all freshmen and sophomores, the Ohio State men’s golf captured its first victory of the season at the Windon Memorial.
Freshman Max Rosenthal led the Buckeyes to a first-place finish out of 15 teams with a final score of 29-over 881 at the Skokie Country Golf Course in Glencoe, Ill.
Rosenthal finished the first round of the tournament tied for 37th place with a score of 77 but turned things around with a second round score of 72, and a final round score of 70 to tie for 8th place individually. OSU went to the top of the leader board after finishing the first round in ninth place.
The Eden Prairie, Minn., native attributed his aggressive comeback to his conservative play.
“My game strategy was really conservative and I was just trying to hit a lot of fairways and greens,” Rosenthal said. “Just a matter of keeping a good mental focus because the course we played was really tough, but my strategy really helped out.”
Not only was it Rosenthal’s first time leading the team, it was also his first tournament in the Buckeyes’ starting lineup.
“I was a little nervous,” Rosenthal said. “I started off with four bogeys right away and coach came up to me and said, ‘All right, you got your nerves out of the way, now just go out there and play with confidence,’ and then I started making some puts and made a comeback.”
Like Rosenthal, Buckeyes golfer sophomore Grant Weaver also made a comeback from 18th place after the first round to 12th place after the final round, finishing the tournament with a score of 220.
Similarly, Weaver attributed his comeback to playing safe.
“My strategy was to work with what I got because I was struggling hitting the ball so I tried to put myself in position where I could get up and down for par,” Weaver said. “I played safe because I wasn’t on top of my game all week.”
Fellow Buckeyes sophomore Boo Timko and freshman Tee-K Kelly followed Weaver, tied for 17th place with a final score of 223.
Freshman Michael Bernard rounded out the team lineup, tying for 37th place with a final score of 15-over 228.
Sophomore Logan Jones competed individually placing 55th with a final score of 234 in his first tournament of the season.
Coach Donnie Darr was pleased with the way the team finished the tournament.
“We played exceptional the last two rounds,” Darr said. “Our first round score wasn’t really good but we didn’t play as bad as the score indicated, we just had a couple bad holes that drove our score up but overall pretty good this week.”
The Buckeyes are scheduled to will take a break from tournament play before hosting the Jack Nicklaus Invitational at the Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, Oct. 8-9.
“It’s a good field at Muirfield,” Darr said. “It’s a great venue and a great opportunity for our players to play in front of their home fans.”