Men’s golf wins NWC Spring Classic

by Sasha Siclait

It was a successful weekend out on the green for the men’s golf team as they took first place out of nine teams in the NWC Spring Classic in Bremerton Wash.

Overall, the team scored three over par and a total of 291. Day two of the tournament was cancelled on Sunday due to the weather conditions. Whitworth was able to take only five of its 12 golfers to the two-day tournament, but was still able to finish first.

The men’s golf team had a high ranking record going into the Spring Classic. At the time of the meet, Whitworth was ranked No. 21 in NCAA Division III.

“We played really well at the West Cup which was good,” Friedrichs said. “The scores we shot gave us confidence that we could play with anybody, and we just had to sustain that.”

The Pirates came out and did just that this weekend taking five of their top players to the tournament.

“We wanted to come out mentally prepared and show that what we did in California was truly what we are capable of,” senior Joey DeGroff said.

Both DeGroff and junior Jesse Salzwedel scored a 72 and an even par on Saturday and junior Stephen Plopper shot a 73.

DeGroff said that the weather was a challenge for the weekend, but they had mentally prepared before hand, and Salzwedel said that Degroff handled the Northwest weather quite well.

“For Joey[DeGroff] to shoot a 72 in these conditions, being used to Arizona weather where it’s 80 degrees and sunny a lot of the, he did a wonderful job and I was impressed with the way he composed himself and produced a score,” Salzwedel said. “Golf is a difficult game in itself, and it makes it that much more difficult when you add wind and rain into the mix.”

Multiple players and Friedrichs said that one of the biggest challenges for the season has been the ability to only bring a few players from the roster to the tournaments because many are capable of competing in all of the tournaments.

“We have a large roster and so many players that can produce and it becomes tough to decide which five guys are going to go and represent Whitworth University,” Salzwedel said.

Whitworth will have the opportunity to go to nationals if they place first or second at the NWC Championship in Woodburn Ore. on April 20 and 21.

“I think its been a great season for the team,” DeGroff said. “We have set some goals and have reached those goals so that’s how I measure our success.”

The Pirates will be playing their next tournament on April 13 in Moses Lake, Wash.

Contact Sasha Siclait at ssiclait16@my.whitworth.edu

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