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Decker tops field: Men’s Golf wins first tournament

April 4, 2014

Monmouth College took to their home course last weekend as they kicked off the Spring 2014 season. Monmouth sported three teams, Red, White and Gray, in a tournament the included Knox College in the Prairie Fire classic tournament. Monmouth’s Red team took the tournament by a total of six strokes over Augustana College’s Gold team. The White and Gray teams finished sixth and ninth, respectively with totals of 644 and 675 over the two days.

Leading the way for the Red team was sophomore Drake Decker, who finished the tournament with scores of 74 and 73 on the par 71 course. Decker’s performance earned him a 5-over-par 147, on his two day total, three strokes better than the three second place finishers. Decker’s performance also earned him the honor of being the Midwest Conference’s golfer of the week.

“It was great to play well individually, especially this early in the season,” said Decker. “The key for my success this weekend, especially on Saturday, was putting. I was able to adjust to the slow greens early on, which helped me make a few birdies.”

All three of Monmouth’s teams present at the tournament placed higher the Knox College, which finished in last place. As a team, Monmouth College Red finished with a 37-over-par 605 with all five members of the team scoring in the 70s. Senior Mike Olszewski finished tied for fifth in the tournament and second on the Red team with a 10-over-par 152, to finish the tournament.

“I felt that our team’s key to securing first this weekend was not shooting outside of the 70s,” said Olszewski. “None of us played bad either day and it really helped us stay consistent and keep the lead. Our team is looking great this year. If we can continue to do what we did this weekend it will be hard for any other team we come up against to beat us.”

Monmouth will head off this weekend to Bloomington to compete in the Illinois Wesleyan University Invitational. The team looks to build off their successful start to the new season and improve as the weather becomes warmer. “For most of us it comes down to getting back into the groove as fast as possible,” said junior Gage DeCook, a member of Monmouth’s White team. “Spring golf is much different from fall golf because you don’t have a whole lot of practice or even practice rounds before jumping straight into tournaments.”

Anthony Matozzi
Contributing Writer

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