By: Brendan Burris ~Staff Writer~
As the winter hopefully begins to subside and warmer weather makes its way to the Midwest, Xavier’s men’s and women’s golf teams went off to Florida to compete in the first events of their spring season.
The men traveled to Dade City, Fla., to play in the Earl Yestingsmeier Match Play Championship, and the women were in Estero, Fla., playing in the FGCU Eagle Invitational.
In a tough match play tournament against opposing schools such as Notre Dame, Miami (OH) and Dayton, the Musketeers finished seventh of eight schools.
In the bracket style team event, the men first played Eastern Michigan and fell to the eventual team champions. The team then played both Ohio University and Ball State.
In both the first and final round of the event, the team lost in tiebreakers, in what turned out to be a highly contested overall event. Juniors Fox Morrissey and Matt Wetterich were the top performers for the Musketeers, whose next event takes place on March 7 in Hilton Head, S.C.
In a 15-team field in Estero, Fla., the women’s team finished in fifth place with a score of 610 (+34), 26 shots behind the winning team, Mercer. The field included schools such as Elon, Stephen F. Austin, Toledo and Ball State. From an individual perspective, the team had two players finish in the top 10, led by sophomore Hanna Lee, whose two-day total of 146 (+2) was good for a tie for fourth place overall. Senior Shane Crutchfield also finished in the top 10, finishing at 151 (+7) tied with two others for 10th.
Overall, the team had four players finish inside the top 40 of 83 overall players. The team next plays on Feb. 26 in the Rio Verde Invitational in Rio Verde, Ariz.
For the season, the men will play five more events and the women will play four before the Big East Championship, which takes place in Okatie, S.C., from April 22-26.
Depending on Xavier’s performance, the NCAA Regionals and beyond could be in store for the team in May. As it stands, both teams look set for a solid spring season.