Men’s golf places 11th in Ram Masters Invitational

Armstrong leads way for Cougars but falls from fourth place on first day to 25th on final day of tournament



Then-junior Blake Snyder contemplates his putt during WSU men’s golf practice on Sept. 19 2013 at Palouse Ridge Golf Club.

JACKSON GARDNER, Evergreen reporter

The WSU men’s golf team took part in the two-day Ram Masters Invitational in Colorado Springs at the Fort Collins Country Club on Monday and Tuesday.

Collectively, it was a tough tournament for everyone. The only team to shoot under par was host Colorado State University, which shot 4-under (836) as a team. The Cougars shot 31-over par (872) good for 11th amongst the field of 16 teams.

“We played with good energy and enthusiasm this week,” Head Coach Dustin White said in a WSU press release. “We just need to avoid some simple mistakes and find a way to put three rounds together at the same time.”

The tournament teed off at 8 a.m. Monday morning with two rounds being played on the first day. For the Cougars, it was senior AJ Armstrong leading the way, carding a 1-under (69) on the first round and 2-under (68) on the second, finishing his day tied for fourth among individuals.

Armstrong wouldn’t put together the same performance Tuesday, shooting 8-over (78) and dropping him back 21 spots to tie at 25th.

However, the rest of the Cougars improved their play on the second day, which led to WSU moving from 12th overall after the first day to their 11th place finish. Junior Nicklaus Chiam put together a 2-over (72) round after shooting 5-over (75) and 1-over (71) on his first day.

Sophomore Ryan Maine also checked in with a 2-over (72) on the final day after shooting 4-over (74) and 5-over (75) in his first two rounds. Chiam and Maine would finish the tournament tied for 38th and tied for 54th, respectively, among individuals.

The tournament first-place finisher for individuals was University of Wyoming’s junior Dan Starzinski, who set a course record by two strokes. Starzinski got off to a red-hot start, shooting 3-under (67) then 4-under (66) on the first day and continued his stellar play into the final day, carding a 4-under (66) to finish his tournament at 11-under (199).

Starzinski helped his Cowboys’ to a sixth-place finish, but it was Colorado State, the hosts of the tournament, who took first for the fifth-consecutive year. Four of Colorado State’s individuals placed in the top 10.

“There’s a lot of golf ahead of us and I like what I saw this week,” White said in the release. “We have a few days before we leave for our next event, and now we have three competitive rounds under our belt to draw from.”

The WSU men’s golf team resumes action next week on Monday and Tuesday as it takes part in the Husky Invitational in Sammamish, Washington.