SILVIS, ILL. – The Iowa Wesleyan College men’s golf team ended its season with a bang, putting together the most impressive performance in the program’s history in tying for fourth at the NAIA Preview Invitational at The TPC at Deere Run.
The Tigers finished ahead of six teams ranked nationally in the Golf World/Nike NAIA coaches’ poll, competing very well against a field stacked with national contenders. IWC also conquered a tough course and challenging weather conditions, doing well in wind and cold on the course that will host the NAIA Men’s Golf National Championships in the spring and is the home of the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic.
IWC shot a two-day score of 634, finishing the first day tied for seventh with a 319, then scoring a 315 on Saturday to tie for the second-best round of the day and move up in the standings. Lindenwood (Mo.) University won the tourney with a score of 630, with Lee (Tenn.) University and Berry (Ga.) College tying for second at 631 and Indiana Wesleyan University tying the Tigers for fourth.
“It’s really exciting for our team to have the success they did because this is the best tournament field in the country of any tournament this whole year, period,” said IWC Head Coach Ted Peetz. “To finish four strokes out of winning something like this is an awesome feeling.
“Our guys knew the course was going to play tough and the conditions were going to be rough. On paper our scores don’t look like much but considering the layout, weather and field it was really outstanding. My hat goes off to the team on their efforts and we hope to use this tournament as a spring board for the spring.”
Among the teams the Tigers finished ahead of were Point Loma Nazarene (Calif.) University, Johnson & Wales (Fla.) University and Texas Wesleyan University, all ranked in the NAIA top 10. IWC also finished ahead of Midwest Collegiate Conference rivals St. Ambrose University and Grand View College. St. Ambrose, which hosted the tourney and will host the national championships in the spring, finished ninth while Grand View placed 13th in the fifteen team field.
Adam Lindsay (Sr.-Aberdeenshire, Scotland) and Emery McGraw (So.-Loveland, Colo.) led the Tigers with two-day scores of 157 that tied for 13th individually. Lindsay finished the fall with the team’s best 18-hole average (74.1) and had seven top 10 finishes in nine events.
“’Scottie’ has had a tremendous season,” Peetz said. “He sets the tone for the rest of the team and has done an amazing job. He is truly not only one of the best players in the conference but also in the country.”
McGraw finished the fall third on the team in average strokes per round (76.9) and was second on the team with three top 10 finishes.
“Emery continues to impress me with his game,” Peetz said. “He can hold his own with anyone out there. He has a great attitude and his golf reflects that.”
Adam Saych (So.-London, England) tied for 23rd at the invite with a score of 159, two strokes ahead of teammate Adam Moyers (Jr.-Burlington, Iowa), who tied for 30th.
“Adam (Saych) came into the fall trying to find his swing,” Peetz said. “For some players it can really throw you off but his work ethic is unmatched and has been a force for our team all year. Adam (Moyers) played a huge role on the team this season. He has played really good golf all fall, I’m really proud of his efforts.”
Jeff Zieber (So.-Cameron, Mo.) rounded out the IWC scoring at Deere Run with a two-day score of 172. The Tigers’ fifth golfer, Zieber also had two top 10 finishes this fall. “Jeff has played hard all season,” Peetz said. “He held a great anchor for our team.”
Mark Cleary (Fr.-London, England) and Nick Juskewycz (Fr.-Fairfield, Iowa) also will be back joining the team in the spring. Both also had their moments playing well in the fall, with Cleary shooting a team-low 66 at IWC’s Fun City Classic to tie the school record for lowest round and Juskewycz shooting a 74 at the GVC Viking Classic in Fort Dodge.
“Mark has a huge upside,” Peetz said. “I am excited to see him build on this fall season. His 66 at the Fun City Classic is one of the highlights of the year. I expect him to have a big impact in the spring.
“Nick really improved on his game from earlier in the season. I am excited to see him progress over the winter and into spring. He had a number of really nice rounds for us and should play a bigger role on this team in the future.”
The Tigers will now take a break for the winter before continuing their season in the spring. The spring season will include the final two rounds of the MCC Championships as well as the NAIA National Championships.
For more information regarding the IWC golf programs or any of the Tiger athletic teams, contact sports information director Adam Glatczak (319-385-6306 phone; 319-385-6384 FAX; firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.