WKU’s best score of the 2020-2021 season at 17-over 881 wasn’t enough to place at the Mobile Bay Intercollegiate in Mobile, Alabama as the Hilltoppers finished at No. 10 out of 15 schools.
The Hilltoppers did everything they could to gain on the competition in the final round, shooting their best team score of the tournament with a 4-over 292.
Sophomore Luke Fuller was one of the main reasons for the Hilltoppers Tuesday afternoon success, bagging a career best 3-under 69. Fuller would finish with a team-best 1-over 217 for the tournament.
Senior Caleb O’Toole and freshman Connery Meyer shot the next best scores for WKU, both racking up a 7-over 223.
“This week was a step in the right direction for us,” head coach Chan Metts said. “It’s not even close to where we expect to be, but it is improvement from the fall.”
It was a very lovely Valentine’s day for Meyer, as the youngster gun downed the Hilltoppers best round of day one with an even-72.
Meyer received help from one of his leaders in redshirt senior Tom Bevington, who shot just one stroke higher than Meyer at 1-over 73. This was Bevington’s best round of the entire event.
Yet, WKU put themselves in a tough position with 36 holes to play, shooting a 7-over 295 and tying for No. 9 with the University of South Alabama going into Monday.
The Hilltoppers couldn’t get any momentum going into day two either, scoring a 6-over 294. This moved WKU one spot back in the standings at No. 10.
It was a different go-to-guy for WKU as well, with O’Toole being the only Hilltopper to shoot under par with his 2-under 70.
Fuller followed up his day one 3-over 75 with a 1-over 73, setting himself up for a majestic round of golf on Tuesday.
The last day at Magnolia Grove Crossings Course was without a doubt the best the Hilltoppers played down in Georgia.
WKU shot a tournament best 4-over par, with the Hilltoppers also acquiring their best individual performance in Fuller’s impressive 3-under 69.
Connery Meyer bounced back from his forgetful Monday outing when he turned an 8-over 80 into an even-72.
Graduate Christain Tooley ended his three day tournament with a 9-over 225, with Tom Bevington shooting 4-over before being disqualified for the third round. The lone individual player for WKU in freshman Aarron Pha struggled, scoring a 23-over 239.
The improved scores from the trip down south this past week was due in large part to the harder practices heading into the second part of the Hilltoppers season according to Chan Metts.
“I have tried to make practice as difficult as I can, since we’ve been back in January, and they have been grinding really hard and handling it well. It was nice to see that hard work pay off some this week,” Metts said.
WKU will now most likely keep using these difficult practices to keep refining their game, but the Hilltoppers have time to do so with their next match not coming till Mar. 4 at Cullowhee, NC. in the Sea Palms Invitational.
Sports reporter Matthew Hargrove can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @MatthewHargrov1