Robert Kepler Intercollegiate: The University of Minnesota men’s golf team will finish the 2009 regular season by taking part in the 40th annual Robert Kepler Intercollegiate this weekend. The tournament, hosted by Ohio State University, will be played at the par 71, 7,455 yard Ohio State University Golf Club’s Scarlet Course.
The 13-team field includes (Golfweek ranking): East Tennessee State (38th), Eastern Michigan (67th), Iowa (60th), Kent State (56th), Marshall (204th), Middle Tennessee State (68th), Minnesota (73rd), Northwestern (58th), Notre Dame (96th), Ohio State (54th), Penn State (51st), Temple (181st) and Wisconsin (85th).
The two-day, 54 hole event (the team’s will play 36 holes on Saturday) is scheduled to get underway at 7:30 a.m. with a shotgun start. Sunday’s final round will also begin at 7:30 a.m. Live scoring will be available for the entire tournament on www.golfstat.com.
Always Looking for Improvement: The Gophers may not want to remember the 2007-08 season, a season that ended without being awarded a spot in the NCAA Regional. The 2008-09 season is not yet in the books but statistically, it has been an improvement.
Minnesota’s stroke average last season was 74.29 per round. Through eight tournaments this season, the Gopher’s have combined for 6,764 strokes for an average round of 294 or 73.5 per player.
Individually, Ben Pisani has paced the Gophers in four of the team’s eight tournaments and has recorded the team’s lowest scoring average. His current average of 73.04 is a career-low and is currently the 19th lowest score in the history of the program. Also, Pisani carded a career-low round of 67 during the second round of last weekend’s Administaff Augusta State Invitational and also tied a career-low with a 54-hole score of 211.
Junior Thomas Campbell is averaging a career-low 74.94, an improvement of over two strokes, while senior Yu Katayama has also improved by over two strokes from his junior season. Fellow senior Victor Almstrom has a chance to improve upon his career-low average of 73.54, as he is currently averaging 73.69.
The Gophers: Minnesota’s lineup will consist of seniors Victor Almstrom and Patrick Datz along with juniors Thomas Campbell and Ben Pisani and freshman Derek Chang. Almstrom and Pisani have appeared in all eight of the Gophers events this season while Chang has seen action in seven events during his opening campaign.
Up Next: The Gophers will be off until May 1-3 when they will take part in the 2009 Big Ten Championships at Penn State Golf Club in State College, Pa. Minnesota finished second to Michigan State in last year’s championships. The NCAA regionals are scheduled for May 14-17.