Wildcats in Ninth After Opening Day of Big 12 Championship

TRINITY, Texas The Kansas State men’s golf team got the start it was hoping for and led the field for a portion of the first round, but the Wildcats couldn’t maintain the torrid pace throughout Friday’s opening day at the Big 12 Championship Tournament. The Wildcats shot 297-307604 (+28) and were in ninth place after 36 holes at Whispering Pines Golf Club.

K-State led the field after nine holes on the par-72, 7249-yard course and posted the fourth-best score in the opening round before dropping into the bottom third of the field by the end of the second round.

“To their credit, (our guys) put themselves in position there right out of the gate,” K-State head coach Tim Norris said. “Then, the execution wasn’t quite there. We played a couple of difficult holes in some wind but we should be past that. It was pretty calm at the end but the (momentum was gone).

“We’re still in good position. I certainly didn’t come in here and expect to win this golf tournament, but I still think we have a chance to record the highest-finish ever (by a K-State team). We’ve still got a lot of work to do.”

Top-seeded Oklahoma State led the field by 15 strokes after Friday’s competition with a 9-under 567 with the Cowboys’ Rickie Fowler and Kevin Tway leading the individuals at 4-under 140.

Joe Ida paced the Wildcats in the opening round while shooting a 1-under 71, K-State’s only round under par on Friday, and was tied for 11th at 1-over 145 after shooting a 74 in the second round. Robert Streb was tied for 16th with a 3-over 147

“Robert really stepped up today and played well and so did Joe,” Norris said. “At this conference and at this level, you’ve got to have four good scores or you’re going to be at the back of the pack.

Mitch Gregson joined Ida and Streb as the three Wildcats contributing both rounds to the team score on Friday and was tied for 40th at 11-over 155. Kyle Smell counted a 5-over 77 for the Wildcats in the opening round and Daniel Wood contributed a 8-over 80 in the second round.

Kansas State continues the three-day, 72-hole event on Saturday when they tee off the 10th tee at 9 a.m. and conclude with 18 holes on Sunday. The winner of the tournament will be crowned as Big 12 Champions and receive an automatic bid into postseason play.

Big 12 Championship
Whispering Pines Golf Club
Trinity, Texas
Par 72, 7,249 yards

Team Scores: 1. Oklahoma State 285-282567 (-9); 2. Texas 288-294582 (+6); 3. Texas A&M 299-284583 (+7); 4. Texas Tech 302-282584 (+8); 5. Oklahoma 295-297592 (+16); 6. Baylor 298-296594 (+18); 7. Kansas 303-295598 (+22); 8. Nebraska 303-300603 (+27); 9. Kansas State 297-307604 (+28); 10. Iowa State 298-313611 (+35); 11. Colorado 311-303614 (+15); 12. Missouri 312-304616 (+40).

Top Individuals: T1. Kevin Tway, Oklahoma State, 72-68140 (-4); T1. Rickie Fowler, Oklahoma State, 72-68140 (-4); T3. Charlie Holland, Texas, 70-71141 (-3); T3. Chris Ward, Texas Tech, 72-69141 (-3); T3. Tyler Rody, Oklahoma, 70-71141 (-3); T6. Mark Johnson, Oklahoma State, 69-74143 (-1); T6. Garrett Merrell, Texas Tech, 76-67143 (-1); T8. Colton Williams, Baylor, 70-74144 (E); T8. Trent Whitekiller, Oklahoma State, 72-72144 (E); T8. Matt Van Zandt, Texas A&M, 74-70144 (E); T11. Lance Lopez, Texas, 70-75145(+1); T11. Mike Coatman, Nebraska, 70-75145 (+1); T11. Brad Hopfinger, Kansas, 75-70145 (+1); T11. Joe Ida, Kansas State, 71-74145 (+1).

K-State Individuals: T11. Joe Ida 71-74145 (+1); T16. Robert Streb 73-74147 (+3); T40. Mitchell Gregson 76-79155 (+11); T58. Kyle Smell 77-85162 (+18); T58. Daniel Wood 82-80162 (+18).