Cougars win the Itani Quality Homes Collegiate

The WSU men’s golf team won the Itani Quality Homes Collegiate at the Palouse Ridge Golf Course in Pullman Tuesday in their season-opening tournament.

WSU finished 10-under par with a three-round score of 842.

“I think, you know, from top to bottom it was fantastic,” Head Coach Dustin White said. “Eight guys in the top 25. I don’t think we could have asked for a much better performance. Everyone played well, it was a true team effort, and you want to see that. I couldn’t be more happy with the result.”

Senior Nick Mandell took home the individual title in the tournament with a score of minus-3 (210). Mandell converted 10 birdies and one eagle in the tournament.

“It’s awesome to do it on my own golf course, to do it here as a senior, I couldn’t have imagined anything better,” Mandell said of his first career collegiate first place finish.

Junior Derek Bayley, tied with University of Idaho freshman Ethan Atherstone for second place. Both players shot 2-under-par (211) for the tournament.

In his debut as a Cougar, freshman Nicklaus Chiam tied for fourth place. Chiam shot 1-under-par (212). Chiam made 15 birdies over the course of the three-round tournament.

Juniors Zach Anderson and Brian Mogg and sophomore AJ Armstrong tied for sixth. The trio shot an even par with a comprehensive score of 213.

To round out the top-25 of the leaderboard, sophomore Grant Cole shot 1-over-par (215) and tied for 14th place while fellow sophomore Aaron Whalen took 21st place with a three-round score of 217 (+4).

“I think team chemistry is a big thing for us and we have a new coach, a new assistant coach and a pretty new-faced team,” Mandell said. “But I think good chemistry would go a long ways.”

The University of Utah finished in second with a tournament score of 861 (+9) and California State University, Sacramento, placed third at 10-over par and a team score of 862. After the tournament, White was pleased with the results.

“Aside from one of the freshmen, everyone has played this golf course enough where they know what to expect,” White said. “I couldn’t be happier for them. We’ll try to get better one week at a time, one round at a time, and hopefully at the end of the year we’ll find ourselves some place we haven’t been for a long, long time.”

The team will follow up their good start to the fall season with a road trip to Albuquerque, New Mexico, Sept. 23 – 24 at the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate Tournament.