September 9, 2014

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

MARION - To say the John A. Logan College men's golf team was off its game Monday would be a gross understatement.

The Volunteers shot an unsightly 316 or 10 strokes worse than Sunday's total of 306, for a combined score of 622, good for third place at the Logan Invitational held at Kokopelli Golf Course.

It's the first time in more than five years that the Vols have failed to win their own tourney and the first time ever that Logan has placed as low as third.

Indian Hills College out of Ottumwa, Iowa cruised to the championship with a two-day score of 573 (290, 283) to finish a stunning 49 strokes ahead of Logan.

Just three days earlier at a tournament in West Frankfort hosted by Rend Lake, the Vols defeated Indian Hills by six strokes. That's a 55-stroke turnaround. Vincennes University placed second at Kokopelli Monday with a combined score of 618.

"I'm very disappointed with our performance these last two days. I did not see this coming," said Logan head coach Tom Ferris. "Clearly, Indian Hills is a very good team and I don't have a problem with losing to them. But I do have a problem with how we lost to them. Most of us did not play up to our capabilities for two straight days. Were we overconfident going into the tourney? I don't know, but we are much, much better than what we showed."

Ferris said fluctuating scores are common with freshman-dominated teams like the Vols. Poor play is not acceptable, he said.

"We have a lot of work to do before we play at Murray State in a couple of weeks - a lot of work. The boys better be prepared to practice."

First-day leader, JALC freshman Neal Northcott of Carmi, ended up third overall with a round of 75 Monday to piggyback with his 69 on Sunday for a total of 144, five strokes back of medalist, Jacob Garstecki of Indian Hills (139).

Sadly, Northcott's score did not count toward the Vols' team score as he did not qualify for the tourney.

Freshman Chris Tyminski of Nashville, Tenn. turned in a 77 Monday for a two-day total of 148. Sophomore Christian Seaton of Mount Carmel checked in at 82 (154). Freshman Chase Witsman of Mount Carmel also carded a 77 (157).  Sophomore Trey Brinker of Evansville earned an 80 (163). Freshman Kody Rendleman of Murphysboro notched an 89 (179).

Freshman Austin Grote of Hoyleton cranked out an 82 (159), while competing as an individual like Northcott.

Rend Lake was fourth overall at the tournament at 624. Lincoln Trail was fifth (671) and Kaskaskia was sixth (688).