ISU golf club finishes strong at nationals


David Stein, then a senior, tees off at the National Collegiate Club Golf Association national championships in San Antonio, Texas in 2015. 

Jack Macdonald

Poised with experience and talent, the ISU golf club went to the National Collegiate Club Golf Association national championships with a goal to place better than 21st, which was last semester’s result.

But gusty winds had other plans.

The club was unable to best last semester’s finish and ended the two-day tournament and fall semester in 23rd place. The lone bright side for the club was senior David Stein, who tied for 7th place.

“The course has some of the strongest recorded winds in history on Saturday,” Stein said. “Gusts reached 50 mph, so it was impossible to get away with bad shots.”

Stein was able to use his national tournament experience and attack the course headfirst. He pared the first three holes of the Oaks Course at TPC San Antonio and double-bogeyed the fourth. Stein recovered by birdying the next three holes and closed out the front-nine, four shots over par.

After the hot start, Stein cooled off and started the back-nine with a bogey, bogey, double bogey, bogey and triple bogey. Stein then ended the first day with back-to-back pars and a bogey.

Sitting in contention for an individual title, Stein entered day two with a real shot at winning the red jacket. Stein was teeing off on the Canyons Course, which was considered less difficult compared to the course he played on in day one. 

“The Oaks course was much longer and tighter,” Stein said. “Any tee ball not in the fairway was essentially a penalty.”

Stein blew away the rest of the team by shooting a 75, three-over par. Matt Dohse and Tyler McGovern were the closest, both carding a 83, 11-over par. Stein birdied three holes and had pars on 10 holes, which catapulted him to a tie for 7th place. Stein’s two-day total was 161.

Dohse and McGovern followed Stein as the top performers for the club. Dohse finished the weekend with a score of 173, 30-over par, which tied for 88th place.

McGovern shot a 178, 34-over par, which secured a tie for 119th place out of 261 golfers. Six of the eight ISU golfers shot better scores on day two than day one. Carter Rau shot a 92 on both days and Joey Rinker was the only golfer to shoot worse on day two.

The club carded a grand total of 872 over the two days, securing 23rd place. Texas won the team championship by shooting an 828. Illinois State’s Austin Havens was able to win the coveted red jacket by shooting a 158, 14-over par. Stein finished three strokes behind Haven.

I’m very pleased with how I finished,” Stein said. “I was only three back of the leader, and I made a couple costly mistakes coming in. I know that I am able to compete with anyone and I can take a lot away from that.”