GV men continue to show improvement

GVL Archive
Senior Travis Shooks

GVL Archives

GVL Archive Senior Travis Shooks

Bryce Derouin

One thing that can be difficult for all athletes is getting back to mid-season form following a long layoff.

For the reigning GLIAC Champions, the Grand Valley State men’s golf team continues down the road of getting back to their winning ways.

The Lakers took third place in the Jewell Classic in Georgetown, Ky., at Cherry Blossom Golf Course, the second Great Lakes Regional tournament of the season. GVSU shot rounds of 292 ( 4) and 296 ( 8) to finish at 588 ( 12), just four strokes off the pace set by tournament winner and host Northern Kentucky University.

“I thought we did some really good things,” said head coach Don Underwood. “I’m seeing some positives and I think the guys are going in the right direction, but I think we’re still in a position to continue to improve.”

This was only the second tournament for the Lakers during this spring season. GVSU took fourth place in their last meet, the Northern Kentucky Spring Classic.

“I thought we did a little better on the greens,” Underwood said. “Guys are playing solid, but we haven’t gotten anyone playing really good yet, and I think we’re getting close to that.”

Senior Travis Shooks and sophomore Chris Cunningham both finished in a tie for 16th on the individual leader board with a 146 ( 2). Senior Nick Gunthorpe came in a tie for 24th with a score of 148 ( 4), and junior Chase Olsen finished in a tie for 35th with a score of 150 ( 6). Sophomore Jack Rider rounded out the scoring for GVSU with a 158 ( 14), which was good for a tie for 95th.

“If you look at where they’re finishing as individuals, they’re finishing in respectable positions,” Underwood said. “But we’re not getting guys competing to win golf tournaments. Once that happens I think we will have a little more success.”

GVSU managed to overcome their slow start on Saturday where they finished the day in sixth, to charge back on Sunday to finish third. However, GVSU still feels like they can improve on closing out rounds strongly.

“We need to finish a little better,” Rider said. “We gave quite a few shots away down the stretch that really cost us at winning this weekend. It’s always been an aspect of our game that has plagued us in the past, so I think we need to focus a little more down the stretch and I think if we can do that, we will have a lot of opportunities to win tournaments.”

The Lakers will continue to improve and work on their games for the rest of the season. The next tournament will be the third Great Lakes Regional in Noblesville, Ind., on Sunday and Monday. Until then, GVSU plans to continue to work on their individual games.

“We do have room to improve, each of us individually have our weak spots,” Shooks said. “For me it’s driving, but for others it’s putting, irons or short game. We each all have different things that we need to work on and continue to improve on.”

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