IU finishes fourth at Chatham Hills

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Coach Mike Mayer talks to freshman Evan Yakubov during practice at the IU Golf Course in Jan. 2018. Mayer has been the head coach of IU men's golf for 21 seasons.  IDS file photo Buy Photos

Despite top-25 finishes from almost every player in team play and a career best round by sophomore Ethan Shepherd, the Hoosiers placed fourth on Monday at the Chatham Hills Collegiate in Westfield, Indiana.

The Hoosiers finished with a combined 12-under par for the entire competition and placed below Purdue, Northwestern and Marquette in the 11-team event. Purdue dominated the field in the final round, moving up three spots to first and finishing 11-under par as a team in that round. The second-best score was even.

Coach Mike Mayer praised the competition for their play, especially in the cold and rainy final round.

“Hats off to Purdue, unbelievable round of golf today from that team in these conditions,” Mayer said.

The Hoosiers were led by Shepherd, who started off the competition slow with a 74 score for the first round, the lowest out of the players in team play. He then rebounded with a career best 66 score on the par-70 course with five birdies and an eagle off a 54-foot putt. That rocketed him to sixth place and he followed that with a 70 score, which was good enough for him to finish fourth. This is his first top-5 finish of the season.

“He’s had some nice events for us this fall,” Mayer said. “I’m not surprised because he’s a very nice player and hopefully, we will see more out of him.”

Not far from Shepherd is senior Jake Brown, who placed tied-for-sixth. The team co-captain shot three-under par for the competition and added another top-10 finish to his resume this fall.

“Brown fought hard the whole tournament,” Mayer said.

Trailing Brown is freshman Harry Reynolds in his first collegiate start for the team. He finished tied for 18th, handing in a 71 and two 72 score cards for the team. The South Carolina native started his first round of collegiate team golf with six birdies and five bogeys.

“It was very nice performance,” Mayer said of Reynolds.

Next is junior Brock Ochsenreiter, who finished tied-for-25th and shot a combined two-over par at the event. The Nashville native slid nine spots in the final round, carding four birdies, five bogeys and a double bogey.

The Hoosiers other freshman starter, Mitch Davis, rounded out team play with a tied for 33rd placement. He finished with a four-over par score after shooting 70 the first round, but the underclassmen slipped down the rankings after shooting a 74 and 76 in the last two rounds.

Since IU was the host of the competition, the team also fielded the rest of their roster to compete as individuals.

Leading the pack of those individuals is junior Evan Geasser, who was the Hoosiers' No. 5 player in the last two events. He finished above Davis at tied for 30th with a four-over par combined score.

Next is sophomore Evan Yakubov, who placed tied-for-57th with a 15-over par combined score.

Not far behind Yakubov is junior Trevor Ranton. He finished with a combined score of 18-over par, which earned him a 62nd place finish.

The Hoosiers will be back in action as a team in two weeks for their last fall competition in Loxley, Alabama, for the Steelwood Collegiate Invitational.

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