Kukula Finishes Tied for Third at UPS Invitational with a 73 in Second Round

Bearcats Shoot 297 over Final 18 Holes to Earn Fourth Place

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

FIRCREST, WASH. -- Ryan Kukula (Jr., Ocean Park, WA/Ilwaco HS) of Willamette University played a strong second round in wet conditions at the Fircrest County Club on Sunday, March 9, earning a 2-over-par 73 to tie for third place in the final 36-hole standings at the UPS Invitational. Kukula and three other golfers shared third place at 149.

Kukula began the day tied for sixth place following a 76 in the tournament's first round on Saturday. His efforts on Sunday helped the Bearcats shoot 297 as a team. Willamette moved up one spot from the first day to finish fourth in the team standings.

Jesse Salzwedel from Whitworth University won the individual title with a score of 146. He carded the low round of the tournament on Sunday with a 2-under-par 69, offsetting a 6-over-par 77 during more treacherous conditions in the first round on Saturday.

Justin Lee of Pacific Lutheran University took second place as he finished two strokes behind Salzwedel. Lee, who was tied for second with a 74 after the first round, shot his way to another 74 in the second round for an overall score of 148.

In addition to Kukula, other golfers tied for third place at 149 were Taylor Klopp from Linfield College (75-74), Scott Martin from Whitman College (78-71) and Derek Wilson from the University of Puget Sound (73-76).

Two golfers tied for seventh place with matching scores of 150. They were Seth Nickerson from Pacific Lutheran (76-74) and Adam Bean from UPS (74-76).

Seven of the eight teams entered in the tournament lowered their scores on the second day. Only Lewis & Clark College carded a higher score in the second round. The Pioneers, who held fourth place at 317 on the first day -- one stroke in front of Willamette -- slipped to 321 on Sunday and dropped to seventh place.

Puget Sound grabbed the team title with a score of 600 (302-298). Whitworth claimed second place at 605 (311-294) and Pacific Lutheran was third at 608 (309-299).

Willamette's score for fourth place was 615 (318-297), while Linfield achieved fifth place at 623 (319-304). Sixth place went to Whitman at 630 (325-305). Lewis & Clark took seventh at 638 (317-321) and George Fox University was eighth at 701 (360-341).

All five of the Bearcats improved their scores in the second round.

Clark Wilson (Fr., Ocean Park, WA/Ilwaco HS) and Chase Lamothe (Fr., Corvallis, OR/Corvallis HS) each reduced his score by eight strokes. Wilson lowered his score from 80 to 72 and tied for 11th place at 152. Lamothe dropped his score from an 83 to a 75 (158).

Jacob Armelino (Fr., Redding, CA/University Prep) went from 80 in the first round to 78 in the second round (158). Steven Rodriguez (So., Red Bluff, CA/Mercy HS) jumped from an 82 to a 77 (159).

The Bearcats will compete next at the 2014 West Cup, hosted by the University of La Verne on Monday, March 24 and Tuesday, March 25. The tournament, which will be held at the Bear Creek Golf Club in Murrieta, Calif., will feature 36 holes on the first day followed by 18 holes on the second day.

UPS Invitational
Fircrest Golf Club
Fircrest, Wash.
March 8-9, 2014
Par 71

Ryan Kukula carded a 73 on the second day of the UPS Invitational to finish tied for third place with an overall score of 149.

Ryan Kukula carded a 73 on the second day of the UPS Invitational to finish tied for third place with an overall score of 149.