After finishing up the Fighting Irish Classic early this week, Indiana men’s golf notched another top-5 finish. Indiana finished play tied for second place, totaling scores of 837 (279-277-281; 3-under). The Hoosiers have now placed in the top-5 in back-to-back tournaments, and will have two more competitions to finish out the fall season.
Indiana tied with Northwestern after three rounds, while the University of Tennessee took home the win, ending the competition shooting an 830 (280-280-270; 10-under). The 14-school competition in South Bend consisted of six teams ranked inside the top-60 of the GolfWeek standings. Headlining the competition was No. 5 Tennessee, No. 26 Purdue, No. 49 University of Louisville, No. 53 Northwestern and No. 57 University of Notre Dame.
Senior Drew Salyers put on another show, placing first for Indiana and fifth overall. Salyers posted scores of 207 (64-73-70; 3-under), including 10 birdies and an eagle throughout the competition. Coming fresh off a second place finish in last week's Windon Memorial Classic, Salyers has been the forefront of Indiana’s starting lineup this fall.
Finishing second for Indiana was redshirt junior Robert Bender III, as he finished the Fighting Irish Classic with a 209 (74-65-70; 1-under). Bender has now shot under par in back-to-back tournaments, an important piece for Indiana’s success.
Bender III tied for ninth place individually and ended his 54 holes of play with a team-high 13 birdies. The redshirt junior has knocked in 23 total birdies in his last two competitions.
Additionally, freshman Cole Starnes continues to be a valuable addition for Indiana’s starting lineup, as he posted a top-15 finish in two straight competitions. Starnes stayed consistent through all three rounds, carding scores of 210 (71-69-70; E) through 54 holes. The freshman totaled 10 birdies throughout the competition.
The trio of Salyers, Bender and Starnes finishing in the top-15 is what propelled Indiana to its best finish of the season.
Indiana also relied on sixth-year senior Noah Gillard, graduate Thomas Hursey and freshman Nick Piesen. Gillard finished the tournament with a 214 (71-70-73; 4-over) with eight birdies and Hursey ended the event at 218 (73-71-74; 8-over), while also knocking in six birdies of his own. Piesen made his second appearance of the season, posting a 226 (73-76-77; 16-over), while carding four birdies.
Indiana will compete in two more tournaments in October before ending the fall season. The Hoosiers will head south on Oct. 15-16 to Vero Beach, Florida to compete in the Quail Valley Collegiate Invitational. Indiana then finishes with the Steelwood Collegiate on Oct. 28-29 in Loxley, Alabama.