Point Park U. places 5th of 7 teams at Unaffiliated Tournament, Elder T5th
May 8, 2012
Alex Bernardini putts from the fringe at Shaker Run GC Monday. Photo by coach Gabe Bubon.
LEBANON, Ohio -- The Point Park University men's golf team finished fifth of seven schools at the Unaffiliated Tournament held Monday and Tuesday (May 7-8) at Shaker Run Golf Course in Lebanon, Ohio.
The Pioneers climbed up one spot in the standings over the final 18 holes on Tuesday but could not dig themselves out of the deficit that was built up in the first 36 holes Monday.
Point Park's Austin Elder, a junior from Warren, Ohio, finished in a tied for fifth individually and was nine shots off the winning score. Had he taken the individual title, he could have qualified for the NAIA National Championship as an individual.
The tournament featured teams from the American Mideast, American Midwest and Gulf Coast Athletic conferences. Since each of those leagues falls short of the required six schools for an automatic bid to the national tournament, the leagues got together to qualify the team champion to nationals.
Not surprisingly, tournament favorite, NAIA No. 13 William Woods (Mo.), easily walked away with the team title with a 37-shot victory over second place Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.). The Owls receive an automatic bid to the NAIA Men's Golf National Championship May 22-25 in Salem, Ore.
Point Park turned in scores of 314-317-311 over the 54 holes to end up at 78-over par. William Woods shot 291-286-299 (+12) to win. Hannibal-LaGrange was second at +49, Daemen was third at +50 and Missouri Baptist was fourth at +61.
Elder shot a 75 in the final round that included birdies on four of the last five holes. That put his 54-hole total at 8-over 224, which was nine shots behind medalist Morgan Hough of William Woods. Hough shot 1-under for the tournament. William Woods had the top three individual finishers with the other two being at even par and 1-over for the tourney.
Elder shot a strong round of even-par 72 in the opening round but fell back with a 77 on the second 18. But his rally down the stretch Monday gave him yet another top 10 finish in his standout career.
Unfortunately for Point Park, Elder was the only Point Park golfer in the top half of the 35-player leaderboard. Freshman Collin Holmes shot 78-82-77 to tie for 19th place. Alex Bernardini (81-77-85) and James Daley (83-81-79) tied for 24th place, and Billy Wivell (85-85-80) finished in 30th.