Vikings’ Ben Landgraf finishes third for second event in a row
Published 11:11 pm Thursday, August 19, 2004
By By ADAM FISHER / Niles Daily Star
Heading into the Gull Lake Invitational, Niles boys' golf coach Greg Gunder knew the field would be tough.
Because of the intense competition, Gunder said his goal for the Vikings was to finish in the top 10.
Led by senior Ben Landgraf's 72, Niles finished ninth out of 20 teams and satisfied Gunder's expectations.
The Vikings' 321 was their best score for an 18 hole course since they shot 319 at the Battle Creek Invitational Aug. 12. Freshman Alex Welch's 79 gave Niles two players below 80 for the first time this year.
Niles' highest score, a 93 by freshman Jeff Jurgonski, was the lowest score of the season for the fifth golfer.
Even with the score, Niles finished 20 strokes behind the invitational's winner Mattawan, who shot a 301.
Landgraf's score put him in third place overall, just one stroke behind two players who tied for first with a 72.
Landgraf tied with three other golfers at 72, but won the tie breaker by shooting the lowest score, a birdie, on the hardest hole on the course.
This was the second tournament in a row in which Landgraf has finished third overall. He shot a 39 Tuesday in Niles first conference tournament, the Big 16 West Division Jamboree at St. Joseph.
The Gull Lake Invitational was the seventh tournament in 11 days for Niles to start the season. The Vikings now return to their conference schedule Monday with their second SMAC meet of the year.
Gunder said he has been impressed with how his young team, featuring three freshmen varsity players, has progress early this season. But, with the tough competition, Gunder said, it's not enough.