Competitive CBU Invite Provides Early Men’s Golf Comparison
Freshman Cody Roth led all Western Washington golfers at the CBU Invitational, placing 12th with a score of 5-over par 221.
Freshman Cody Roth led all Western Washington golfers at the CBU Invitational, placing 12th with a score of 5-over par 221.

Friday, April 1, 2016

PORTLAND, Ore. – Conference opponents got an early look at the competition with five of six GNAC men's golf teams participating in the CBU Invitational in Corona, Calif., on Mar. 21 and 22.

With Concordia as the lone absent team, the other five competed in a field of 17 teams to see where they stacked up against their rivals. Excluding the GNAC Championships, the CBU Invitational had the most participating GNAC teams all season.

While Simon Fraser has continued to swing in top-notch form after winning the title last season, it was Western Washington who led all GNAC teams in Corona. The Vikings tied for fourth place with Western New Mexico State, shooting 891 over three rounds. Freshman Cody Roth led the team with a 12th place finish, shooting 5-over par 221.

Western Washington’s overall play led them to the high placement. Juniors Chris Hatch and Brett Johnson each tied for 16th, just a stroke back of Roth at 6-over-par 222. Junior Jeffrey Marcum tied for 33rd at 228 to round out the scoring for the Vikings.

Simon Fraser had the lowest individual score from the GNAC with junior Kevin Vigna’s 4-under par 220 tying for 10th place. Sophomore Chris Crisologo tied with Roth for 12th at 221. Sophomore Marcus Brown tied for 24th carding a 224 to help lead the Clan to a seventh place team finish.

Northwest Nazarene and Saint Martin’s finished just one stroke apart, with the Crusaders placing ninth at 919 and the Saints taking 10th with a score of 920. Senior Keynan Fanslow’s three round score of 8-over-par 224 tied him with Brown for 24th place to lead the Crusaders.

The Saints were led by a consistent group, finishing within five strokes of each other. Senior Ryan Pickthorn led the way with a score of 230 to tie for 38th. He was followed by sophomores Andrew Raab and Jared Rasmussen who tied for 40th at 231. Junior Austin Spicer finished one stroke back at 232 to tie for 45th and senior Kevin Cullen tied for 55th at 235.

Rounding out the five GNAC teams was Montana State Billings, who placed 16th with a team score of 952. In their first spring golf tournament, the Yellowjackets were led by Michael Porter and Austin Walter, who tied for 60th at 236.

The following week, the Yellowjackets hosted their own MSUB Spring Invitational in Huntley, Mont., on Mar. 28. Originally scheduled as a two-round event, the tournament was shortened to one round due to weather conditions. The Yellowjackets placed second out of four teams, just two strokes behind first place Minot State. Montana State Billings shot 13-over par 301, led by Porter’s second place finish at even-par 72. Walter tied for fourth carding a 1-over 73, followed by Braden Luper at 4-over 76 for 11th place. Scott Larson and Connor Miele tied for 15th with scores of 8-over par 80.

Concordia took part in its first tournament of March at the George Fox Spring Break Invitational in Walla Walla, Wash., on Mar. 26. Competing against Corban and George Fox, the Cavaliers took first place in the one-round event. Sophomore Tanner Huddleston was named the GNAC Men’s Golfer of the Week after taking medalist honors, carding a score of 4-under-par 68. His teammates junior Ryan Melnychuk and sophomore Nick Huff placed second and third, firing scores of 71 and 73, respectively.

The Cavaliers followed that tournament up by attending the NNU Invitational, hosted by Northwest Nazarene. In the six team field, Concordia placed second with a team score of 912, while Northwest Nazarene took the team title by carding an 888. The Crusaders took the top four spots, led by junior Jack Strickland’s 2-over-par 218 for medalist honors. Fanslow and senior Michael Delie tied for second, carding scores of 7-over-par 223. Freshman Justin Higgins tied for fourth at 226.

Concordia took second place, led by Huddleston’s sixth place finish at 227. Melynychuk tied for eighth, carding a score of 229 and senior Kolton Kyne tied for 10th at 230.

The Vikings wrapped up their March at the St. Edwards Invitational in Austin, Texas, on Mar. 28 and 29. Western Washington placed ninth out of 15 teams, carding a team score of 876. Freshman Michael Butler led all Viking golfers with a 6-over-par 216. Hatch tied for 33rd at 11-over-par 221 and Johnson tied for 37th at 12-over-par 22.

Each team participates in just one more tournament before the GNAC Championships in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho on Apr. 18 and 19. Simon Fraser, Montana State Billings and Western Washington attend the Mustang Intercollegiate in Goodyear, Ariz., on Apr. 4 and 5. Northwest Nazarene, Saint Martin’s and Concordia participate in the last regular season tournament at the Hanny Stanislaus Invitational in Turlock, Calif., on Apr. 11 and 12.