Men's Golf Grabs Top-five Finish At Firestone Invitational
Oct. 13, 2009
AKRON, Ohio. -- Playing in cold temperatures and winds over 20 mph, the Kentucky men’s golf team persevered through the final round of the Firestone Invitational to place four golfers in the top 20 and gather its first top-five tournament finish of the year on Tuesday.
Senior Ben Fuqua (73-73-73-219) and freshman Joseph Barr (73-74-72-219) posted the best scores of the day for the Wildcats to finish tied for fifth. Fuqua, a native of Danville, Ky., shot a 1-over-par 73 in the final round, duplicating his score from rounds one and two. The senior improved eight places from yesterday, as he started the third and final round in a tie for 13th place. Fuqua posted six birdies in the final 18 holes of the tournament, which matches the number of birdies the senior posted in the first two rounds combined. The top-five finish is the first of the season for Fuqua, who posted two top-five finishes last year.
Barr, playing as an individual in the tournament, posted UK’s best score of the day with an even-par 72. The freshman made an impressive climb up the leaderboard on Tuesday, starting the day in a tie for 20th and finishing 15 positions better. The native of Versailles, Ky., posted four birdies in the final round including a birdie on the par-5 final hole of the tournament to climb into a tie for fifth. This was Barr’s first tournament experience as a Wildcat.
Senior Jordan Blann (73-70-77-220) finished the tournament in a tie for 12th. The native of Bowling Green, Ky., posted a 54-hole score of 4-over-par. Blann sat at even par after posting back-to-back birdies on No. 3 and No. 4, but carded devastating double bogeys on No. 6 and No. 9. The senior posted three birdies in the final round to gather his best finish of the year.
The final Wildcat to card a top-20 score for the tournament was senior Derek Oldham (69-75-80-224). The native of Lexington, Ky., finished the tournament tied for 20th. The senior started the final day even-par and in sixth place after tying a career-low score in the first round with an impressive 69. The 20th-place finish is the best of the season for Oldham, who played in the tournament as an individual.
Junior James Kania (74-74-77-225) and freshmen Michael Kania (76-76-76-228) and Chase Parker (76-80-75-231) wrapped up the Kentucky rotation. James Kania finished in a tie for 26th place after two birdies in the final round. Michael Kania, younger brother to James Kania, finished in a tie for 38th while fellow freshman Chase Parker finished tied for 51st. Sophomore Mads Kristensen, the final individual performer for UK, improved eight positions in the final round to finish in a tie for 34th. The native of Denmark posted an impressive eagle on the par-4 third hole, the only Kentucky eagle of the day.
The tournament was won by St. Mary’s College (291-286-292-869) by one stroke over Eastern Michigan (283-293-294-870). Michigan State (293-292-303-888) finished in third place, while No. 15 Kansas State (296-296-297-889) finished in fourth place, just one stroke ahead of UK.
The individual title was won by Western Carolina’s Ricky Stout, who started the day with the lead and did not relinquish it. Marty Jeppesen finished second, just one stroke back of Stout, while Robert McRae from St. Mary’s College finished third.
The Wildcats will return to action on Oct. 25, when they travel to Windermere, Fla., for the Isleworth Collegiate Invitational.