Taylor Jones | Staff Writer
The Whitworth men’s golf team “rose to the occasion” on Monday, Sept. 20 and Tuesday, Sept. 21 at the Bulldog Fall Invitational, according to head coach Scott Kramer.
Even facing the challenges of traveling to an away match, the team “not only had a great experience, but performed well,” Kramer said.
“Our whole team was pretty burnt out after the first day. We knew we needed to make something happen on Tuesday for us to climb up the leaderboard,” junior Sam Pauly said.
Pauly had a strong showing, winning 1st place in the national level competition.
“Coach Kramer told us at the beginning of the first day that we had nothing to lose. That is what got me going,” Pauly said.
Once the last group finished putting the 18th hole, “we [Coach Kramer and Pauly] looked at each other and knew I had done something really special. It was such an awesome feeling getting to win that big of a tournament alongside some fantastic teammates.” Pauly said.
Pauly shot 69-67-69 for a total of 205, which gave him in a one-stroke lead. Pauly is the first Pirate player ever to shoot three consecutive rounds with a score in the 60’s. Pauly made 13 birdies and 34 pars on Tuesday, September 21.
Graduate student Caleb Belton and Junior Oliver Nordberg also finished in the top 10. Belton shot 213 tying for 8th, while Nordberg shot 214 to tie for 10th.
“The team learned that they are capable of performing well against some of the top teams in the country… we can compete against anyone,” Kramer said.
Whitworth men’s golf will play again on Oct. 2-3 at the George Fox Invitational in Gearhart, Oregon.