Indiana men’s golf sent four players to the Butler Spring Invitational this week to compete as individuals in the 17-team event.
Junior Eric Berggren led those representing the cream and crimson at the Highland Golf and Country Club in Indianapolis by tying for 15th place, while 5th-year senior Evan Yakubov came in a tie for 27th. Sophomore Robbie Bender III and freshman Ethan Chelf rounded out the results for the Hoosiers by tying for the 43rd and 81st places, respectively.
All four Hoosiers were within four strokes of one another after the first 18 holes, with Bender III leading the quartet with a score of 73, 3-over par. His round consisted of a team-high four birdies, with three coming on the front nine.
Yakubov came right behind Bender III with a score of 74. His lone birdie of the first round came during the 17th hole, which was only his second hole of the day, due to the shotgun start style of the event.
Berggren and Chelf carded rounds of 75 and 77, respectively, and both birdied on the sixth hole. Berggren also birdied on the 10th hole, while Chelf had back-to-back birdies during his first round as he also recorded a 3 on the seventh hole.
Tee times were pushed back due to cold temperatures and frost in the area, which meant the second set of 18 holes Monday had to be scratched from the schedule. The 54-hole event was converted to a 36-hole event, with 18 holes being played on both Monday and Tuesday.
Even with the cold weather, Berggren got off to another good start on day two, leading the Hoosiers with a score of 1-under 69, a career-low round for the junior. Berggren birdied three more holes to become the sixth Hoosier to break 70 birdies this season. He finished in a tie for 15th overall and second among Big Ten golfers with a two-day total of 144, 4-over par.
Yakubov bested his first round score by one stroke in the second, shooting a 73. The 5th-year senior sunk birdie putts on holes six, 12 and 16.
Bender III and Chelf rounded out the Indiana pack with scores of 76 and 78, respectively, to complete the outing for the four Hoosiers who have seen the least amount of time on the course this season.
Indiana will return to team competition for the final two regular-season tournaments of the season, beginning with the Boilermaker Invitational from April 9-10 in West Lafayette, Indiana.