With the season nearing its end and just a national tournament left to walk, the St. Ambrose University men’s golf team is excited to golf the tournament they have been working towards for the entire year.
This year, the golf team will be hosting the national tournament for the third year in a row. The tournament will take place on May 24 at the TPC Deer Run Golf course in Silvis, Illinois. So, while the rest of the Ambrose community will be teeing off into their summer break, the golfers will still be hard at work representing their team.
While the spring season may have been a struggle (mostly due to the weather) for some of the teammates, most of the men are excited to see what nationals can bring. The Bees placed second at the conference tournament, only losing to NAIA fourth ranked Grandview. The team had two top 10 finishers and all five members of varsity ended up in the top 15. The championship was played at the Blue Top Ridge Golf Course in Riverside, Iowa. Like most of the season, the tournament was shortened due to weather.
Captain Jake Schertz was the top finisher for the Bees, finishing in a tie for eighth with 197. Joining him in the top 10 was Matt Skahill, who finished just a shot behind Schertz with 198.
“With having such a strong core of team members, I’m really looking forward to next year to being as good if not even better,” Schertz said. “We will be seven or eight deep, and I think we could make a great push for senior year.”
During the fall season, the Fighting Bees won the Wisconsin Green Bay tournament by 12 strokes. This was a huge win for the Bees as they were the only NAIA team in the tournament to be invited, knocking down some Division I teams. Junior Ben Gillen was exceptionally pleased with the fall season
“I had a really great fall, I was able to make the top 10s in some of the tournaments, and I’m really able to see an improvement in myself compared to last year,” Gillen said.
Although the spring has been a little different, Gillen has no doubts the team will excel during nationals.
“Things seem to have started slow this spring, but we play well, and the team as a whole has really great team chemistry, and that will show at nationals.”
Senior Matt Skahill was even named the Midwest Collegiate Conference Men’s Golfer of the Week after his third-place showing at the Augustana Invitational earlier this month. Skahill continued to play strong this month by finishing in a tie for fourth place individually to help St. Ambrose secure sixth place at the NAIA Classic.
The Team will return three of the top five players next season and is eagerly waiting to see what the conference competition will be like. Students can check the Ambrose website during summer break to see how great the men’s team did at nationals.