April 13, 2014
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The final round of the Hawkeye-Great River Entertainment Invitational concluded today, as the Michigan State men's golf team tied for ninth at 35-over par 899 (303-294-302). Sophomore Mitch Rutledge led the Spartans by tying for 16th at 5-over par 221 (75-71-75).
"Overall, we did not execute very well but hung in there," said Michigan State head coach Casey Lubahn. "We were tough down the stretch and that is a step in the right direction. We didn't let the conditions, which were severe, get to us, which was also important. We just have to keep getting better, and it starts with a good week ahead of us as we conclude the regular season."
Today's round of 14-over par 302 by the Spartans was tied for the sixth-lowest on the day.
Rutledge led MSU in a tournament for the fourth time and posted his fourth top-20 showing this season. He led the Spartans with nine birdies this weekend, including eight on the par-5s, where he went 8-under over the 54 holes. His 16th place finish tied for his fourth best in his two-year Spartan career.
Senior Gareth Blease carded his second-lowest 54-hole score in his career, shooting an 8-over par 224 (76-74-74) to tie for 26th. Blease had the lowest round of the day for MSU. He had seven birdies and two eagles on the weekend, including a hole-in-one in yesterday's second round. Blease played the par-5s at 7-under par for the tournament.
Freshman Charlie Netzel had 14 pars on the afternoon en route to a 4-over par 76, finishing the tournament at 11-over par 227 (75-76-76) and in a tie for 38th. Redshirt freshman Sean Friel tied for 47th at 14-over par 230 (77-73-80) and junior Jon Finley tied for 53rd at 17-voer par 233 (78-78-73).
Iowa led wire-to-wire in their home tournament, posting an 11-under par 853 to win by 15 stroke over Iowa State. The Hawkeyes' Steven Ihm was the individual medalist, carding a 7-under par 209.
The Spartans play their last tournament before postseason play next weekend, when they travel to the Boilermaker Invitational on April 19-20 in West Lafayette, Ind.