Three Big Takeaways: Cyclones fourth heading into final round


LUKE LU/Iowa State Athletics

Luke Gutschewski hits a practice shot. (Courtesy of Iowa State Athletics)

Spencer Schultz

Iowa State men’s golf enjoyed a solid first day at the Hawkeye Invitational in Iowa City, ending the day in fourth place after 36 holes.

The Cyclones are just a stroke behind third place in the 15 team field. Lachlan Barker led the way in fourth place on the individual leaderboard, as he’s just two strokes off the lead.

Slow second round

Iowa State started off the day blazing hot, shooting a first round 288, setting the team up for a tie for third place with Kansas State.

The second round didn’t go as well, as the Cyclones shot a 297 — nine shots worse than the opening 18 holes. With that being said, Iowa State only dropped to fourth on the leaderboard due to a few other teams slowing down as the day went on as well. 

Par 5 excellence

Iowa State’s performance on Par 5s is the main reason for it being high up on the leaderboard. The Cyclones averaged a score of 4.68 on the long ones, -13 overall.

That was tied for second best in the field on the day, just one stroke off the best. From this, the Cyclones capitalized on their birdie chances. Their 32 total birdies after two rounds were second-most behind the leaders, Kansas.

Secondary golfers improving

The Cyclones have struggled all season with getting something going behind their leading golfer. In turn, it’s significantly hurt their team score and limited their upside. 

Most of the time, it’s been Barker leading the way and that continued Saturday. The difference though, was the guys behind him. Ricky Costello (T20) and Nate Vance (T28) in particular were very effective on the day. They each sit inside the top 30 heading into the final 18 holes.

Elsewhere, Frank Lindwall (T41) played decent, shooting +3 in each of the two rounds. Luke Gutschewski’s second round 79 led to a fall on the leaderboard, as he’s tied for 59th out of the 78 golfers.

Kansas leads the way so far at -10 with a comfortable nine stroke lead over second place Iowa (-1). Being just a stroke back, third place seems doable for Iowa State (+9) on the final day. 

Iowa State tees off 9:45 a.m. Sunday to conclude the Hawkeye Invitational and the regular season.