Men’s Golf: Northwestern hopes to continue momentum at last fall tournament


Daily file photo by Lauren Duquette

Ryan Lumsden follows through on a drive. The junior and the Wildcats will have a chance to win their second straight tournament this weekend.

Benjy Apelbaum, Assistant Sports Editor

Men’s Golf

After winning at home three weeks ago, Northwestern is ready to take its success on the road.

The Wildcats will tee off at their final fall tournament Saturday in North Carolina at the UNC-Greensboro Collegiate as part of a 10-team field. NU will enter the tournament fresh off a win at its home tournament, the Windon Memorial Classic.

The breakthrough at the Windon came after the Cats struggled in their first two tournaments of the year. Against difficult competition, NU finished 13th of 15 at the Fighting Illini Invitational and 10th of 15 at the Erin Hills Intercollegiate. However, the last round at Erin Hills was a bright spot for the Cats, as the team combined for 20 birdies and shot the fourth-best score in the field.

“The last event was really encouraging, and we felt like at the last round at Erin Hills we turned the corner,” coach David Inglis said.

That momentum continued into the Windon, which was played at nearby Evanston Golf Club, where NU practices regularly. Senior Dylan Wu said he hopes the Cats will be able to perform at a high level this weekend at a less familiar course.

“At our home tournament, we were really comfortable playing at a course we played all the time,” Wu said. “The coaches emphasized they want us to have that sense of urgency and agency to feel like you can play well no matter where you are.”

Though NU will lack a home-course advantage in North Carolina, many members of the team have gained familiarity with the event, which the team played in the previous two seasons.

However, the course’s grass will be different this year, Inglis said. He said the new species will take some getting used to, but did not believe his team would be at a disadvantage because other teams will have to adjust, too.

The team had a three-week layoff to prepare for the tournament, and after coming out flat in its first events, Inglis said the team’s goal was to improve throughout the fall.

“The work we have been doing has paid off; it’s not like we’ve done anything revolutionary in practice these past two weeks,” Inglis said. “Everyone feels like their game is in a much better place than it was at the beginning of the fall, so that’s the most important thing.”

Junior Ryan Lumsden said NU’s recent practices have included head-to-head match play intended to sharpen its competitive edge. And with one final shot this fall to secure a victory, that practice mentality could be essential.

“There has been a great atmosphere in practice and we want to win,” Lumsden said. “Now is the time to get over the hump and finish that fall season with a win.”

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