Beckham, Aguirre lead WKU golf in conference championships

Evan DePasco

The WKU men’s golf team completed their season this week at the Conference USA Championships at Texarkana Country Club in Texarkana, Arkansas. 

The team finished 11th overall with a 37-over 901(296-298-307) in their first C-USA Championships since joining the conference last summer. 

Head Coach Phillip Hatchet says the team struggled the first couple days by letting some easy mistakes get away from them. 

“We could have cleaned up our rounds a little bit by getting an up and down or two to keep the momentum going in the round.” 

Senior Brandon Beckham and Junior Trey Aguirre led the Tops and tied for 23rd place with a final tally of 222 after the three days of competition.  

“It wasn’t what I had in mind when showing up to the tournament earlier this week,” Beckham said. “I had my ups and downs throughout the tournament and especially on the final day”. 

Aguirre played his best round during the final day, shooting a team best 70 after a 77 the day before. 

“The pin placements were tough today but I was able to play steady all day long and put together a good round,” said Aguirre. 

The tournament was comprised of a strong field— North Texas holds the lead going into the match play round after posting a total score of 861. UAB (868), Texas El Paso (871) and Charlotte (872) will compete for the overall winner tomorrow.  

“We let a couple things get away from us earlier in the week,” Hatchet said. “It was an honor to compete in the C-USA championships, there are a lot of strong teams in the conference and definitely a step above the Sun Belt.” 

Weather became a big factor during the final days as the team struggled with closing out on the back nine of the course and keeping the ball straight. 

“The course definitely played harder in the second and third round,” said Beckham. “We had to deal with the wind and that made us struggle to keep the ball in the fairway which is the key to this course.” 

Senior Nate Johnson won the individual title at the Cobra PUMA Invitational last week in Cincinnati and followed Beckham and Aguirre this week with a total of 229. 

Junior Austin King finished fourth with a total of 229, followed by senior Cameron Beal who finished with a 235. 

WKU would have had to finish in the top four to qualify for Wednesday’s match play round to decide the winner of C-USA.