Golf returns from hiatus in Wexford tourney

Peter Mason
Contributing Writer

After a four-month hiatus, men’s golf teed off the Spring season with a sixth place finish in the Wexford Plantation tournament on Feb. 23-24.

Played in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, the Wexford golf course saw sophomore Adam Ball finish the second round with a 68, which was the best round of any player on the field. Ball would also finish with seven birdies in two rounds of play. Ball’s second place finish is the Richmond native’s 10th top-five finish in 24 career tournaments.

“I thought it was a positive start,” Ball said. “We’re a pretty young team this semester, no seniors in the starting five. There were a lot of good things that happened, which really showed an upswing for us. It was definitely rough trying to prepare for it but I think everybody did a good job hanging in there and making the best out of the situation that we had.”

While the snow in Richmond made it difficult for the team to practice, the weather conditions in South Carolina would shorten the event to two days. Coach Matt Ball’s team were able to finish sixth with a combined score of 601, scoring 303 in the first round and 298 in the second. VCU would finish +25 behind South Carolina Aiken with a +24, Francis Marion with a +22, Georgia Southern and Charleston Southern each with a +17 and Wofford College with a +10.

Junior Steffen Harm finished the first round with a 75 and a score of 74 in the second for a total of 149. He tied for 16th in the overall tournament.

“The course was a little bit shorter and kind of tight,” Harm said. “Most of the holes were between houses so whenever you went off line, it was always out of bounds. The greens were a little bit difficult, it really mattered where you came from approaching the green and also if you missed, it really mattered on which side, so it was a good test.”

Harm and Ball’s combined score 149 and 143, respectively, made the two juniors the leading scorers for VCU. Freshman Osama Kahn finished as the third leading Ram with a combined score of 156, sophomore Enej Sarkanj finished fourth with a score of 158 and sophomore Jamie Clark finished as the fifth leading Ram with a score of 160.

“The golf course was a great test,” Ball said. “It’s very good, it fits my game well but it’s definitely challenging in ways and I think we handled it pretty well.”

Last year, Ball’s team finished fourth out of a field of 17 behind Ball’s first collegiate victory. Over the course of two days, Ball’s combined score was 212 (73-73-66) in three rounds of play. The 54-hole tournament saw Ball finish 4-under par and record 15 birdies.

The next competition for the Rams will be at the Lake Course in Opelika, Alabama in the Auburn Tiger Invitational on March 8-10.

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