The Northern Illinois men’s golf team earned a third-place finish at the Mid-American Conference Match Play with a 4.5-1.5 win over Miami in the third-place match on Tuesday at the Lake Jovita Golf and Country Club.
The Huskies played in the third-place match after falling, 3.5-2.5, to Ball State in the competition of Monday’s semifinal match.
“I believe we were the second-best team here this week,” said NIU head coach Tom Porten.
“We came so close to beating Ball State (in the semifinals) we just couldn’t close the deal. But it is a good start to the spring season, we hit some good shots, we hit some bad shots but we made adjustments as play went on. I thought our team competed hard and battled to the end.”
Redshirt junior Griffin Bauman (Crystal Lake, Ill./Central) defeated Miami’s Mark MacDonald, 2 and 1, to earn his third win in as many matches, Bauman was the only Huskie to finish the MAC Match Play with a perfect 3-0 mark.
Freshman Nick Schiavi (Barrington, Ill./Barrington) turned in the highlight of the day with a hole-in-one on the 146-yard 14th hole in his match against Brett Tomfohrde. Schiavi’s nine-iron ace helped him earn a 4 and 3 victory over Tomfohrde. Junior Kurtis Luedtke (Aurora, Ill./West) also claimed a 4 and 3 win over Brantley Kushner while junior Matt Gorman (Waunakee, Wis./Waunakee) recorded NIU’s other victory with a 2 and 1 triumph over Scott Cahill.
Freshman Thomas Dunne (Dublin, Ohio/Dublin Coffman) and Austin Kelly of Miami halved their match.
In the conclusion of Monday’s semifinal, NIU and Ball State entered play on Tuesday morning tied at a point apiece. The Cardinals led in three of the four unfinished matches however and the Huskies were unable to complete a morning comeback. Schiavi maintained his Monday lead for a 2 and 1 win over T.J. Carpenter and Dunne fought back to halve his match, but the Huskies were unable to turn the other two matches in their favor as Ball State edged NIU.
The Huskies will return to action Friday, March 2, with a match against Austin Peay in Hopkinsville, Ky.
For more information on NIU men’s golf and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.