Bearcats Shoot 330 for Second Place Finish at NWC Four-Way Golf Tournament #4 at Illahe Hills Country Club

SALEM, ORE. -- Playing at full strength for the first time in 2006-07, the Willamette University men’s golf team recorded its best finish so far during the fall season, as the Bearcats took second place at the Northwest Conference Southern Division Four-Way Tournament #4, hosted by Willamette at the Illahe Hills Country Club. Linfield College won the team title in 307 strokes over the 18-hole event. Willamette followed at 330, and was followed by Lewis & Clark College at 340 and by Pacific University at 355.

Medalist honors went to Linfield’s Tyler Nelson, who shot a one-over-par 73 (37-36). He was followed by Linfield teammates Andrew Fitch, with a 77 (37-40), and Kyle Henderson, with a 78 (41-37), as the Wildcats swept the top three places. Fourth place was a tie between Daniel Sloan of Lewis & Clark and Joel Rychard of Linfield, both at 79, with Sloan shooting 42-37 and Rychard carding 38-41. Jeff Nigro of Linfield claimed sixth place with an 80 (44-36).

Willamette’s Martin Kraal (Sr., Springfield, OR/Springfield HS) took seventh place, while leading the Bearcats with an 81 (39-42). Kraal was tied for fourth place after the front nine. Eighth place overall was a tie between Baylor Falk (Jr., Albany, OR/West Albany HS) of Willamette and Ben Bryant (So., Albany, OR/West Albany HS) of Willamette, both at 82. Falk carded 41-41, while Bryant recorded 43-39. Tenth place went to Matt Taylor of Linfield at 83 (42-41).

Completing the Bearcats’ team score, along with Kraal, Falk and Bryant, was Robbie Beard, who covered the course in 85 strokes (43-42). Also golfing for Willamette were Tyler Robinson (Jr., Roseburg, OR/Umpqua Valley Christian School), who shot an 87, and Hardy Almes (So., White Plains, NY/Hackley School), who shot a 103 (44-59).

Henderson of Linfield was the medalist for the overall NWC Four-Way Tournament, which included one round each at four different sites between Sept. 23 and Oct. 16. He shot 72-71-74-78 for a final score of 295. Henderson also won the NWC’s fall match-play competition, as he defeated Nigro 2-and-1 at Illahe Hills on Monday. As a team, Linfield won all four of the Southern Division Four-Way Tournaments this fall.

The next event on the conference men’s golf schedule is the NWC Men’s Fall Classic, Oct. 21-22 at Aspen Lakes Golf Course in Sisters, Ore. The Fall Classic is one of three tournaments that will determine the Northwest Conference champion for 2006-07. The other two tournaments will be held during the spring.