WKU finishes fifth at WKU/Kenny Perry Invitational

Andy Gladden/WKUsports.com

Jonah Phillips

After a disastrous start to the inaugural WKU/Kenny Perry Invitational, WKU recovered to finish fifth on Tuesday at the Club at Olde Stone.

The Toppers shot a team score of 311 on Tuesday during the third and final round. That score was the third-lowest among the 12 teams competing.

Jacksonville State won the team contest with a three-day score of 64-over par.

Next came Louisville (+66), Austin Peay (+69), Akron (+77) and then WKU (+101).

Akron’s Charlie Bull was the individual champion with a nine-over-par score. WKU’s highest finisher was sophomore Andy Gladden (+22).

WKU climbed from 12th on Sunday to fifth after Tuesday, marking the largest three-day improvement of any team at the event.

Combining team scores from just days two and three of the tournament, WKU would have finished in second place, two strokes out of first.

“Considering how Sunday went, I am about as happy as I could be,” coach Phillip Hatchett said.

The Toppers buried themselves in last place after struggling with windy conditions on Sunday. Some gusts reached 40 miles an hour, Hatchett said.

“That’s just the game of golf,” he said. “I wasn’t going to beat up on our players. The course did enough of that.”

WKU rebounded from that effort with a 300 team score on Monday, the lowest score in the field that day.

That marked the first time since the 2010 Kauai Collegiate Cup that the Toppers took home the lowest team score on a single day at a tournament.

Sophomore Andy Gladden improved on his Sunday 90 by firing a 75 on Monday and 73 on Tuesday. It was is first tournament of the year.

“I think I played well this weekend considering the conditions,” Gladden said.

Hatchett said Gladden’s score “gives you an example that we have boys on the team that don’t travel and can still shoot.”