Mens Golf plays big in Texas

Miles Jordan, [email protected]

The ULM Warhawk Golf Team brought five golfers to participate in the Lonestar Invitational hosted by the University of Texas San Antonio earlier this week. The Warhawks finished in the top third of the tournament, coming in fifth place of 15 shooting 15-over-par over the two days of play.

Junior Joao Giaro was the most successful Warhawk of the tournament tying for 10th place and shooting two over par. His second round was the best of a single Warhawk at the tournament shooting 71 equaling one-under-par for the day. Giaro entered the day in 22nd place. He jumped 12 places from day one to day two helping the Warhawks secure fifth place. He finished only four strokes off the lead after a strong round including three birdies on the day.

The two most successful golfers of the tournament were Arkansas State’s Zan Luka Stirn and UTSA’s Sean Meehan who both finished four-under-par. Meehan was in the lead coming into the second day after he shot a four-under-par score of 68 in the opening round. Meehan had the only score in the 60s in the first day. The eventual co-winner Luka Stirn was not far behind Meehan after the first day shooting a two-under-par score of 70.

The Warhawks had five golfers in the tournament including three freshmen: South Africans Keegan McLachlan and Otto Van Buynder and British Michael Gilbert. McLachlan had the best debut tournament for the trio of freshmen, tying for 20th shooting a 73 and a 75 leading to a four-over-par tournament. Gilbert had the next best debut of the trio shooting one back of McLachlan, with a five-over-par tying with fellow Warhawk redshirt junior Jeff Berry. Van Buynder finished two strokes back at seven-over-par. The trio’s solid showing made an impression on ULM Director of Golf Tim Baldwin. “We finished only two shots out of third place, so I’m encouraged by the potential of this team. We need to tighten up or ball striking a bit, and when we do, we will be hard to beat,” Baldwin said.

Baldwin was also impressed by how the team performed through the adversity of weather as the first day featured four hours worth of rain delay. The rain delay caused the first round to be shortened to 18 holes and the overall tournament to 36 holes. Baldwin said, “Overall, I’m pleased with the effort of the team, especially considering we had three freshmen in the lineup, on a tough golf course and in tough (weather) conditions.”

Next up for ULM is the Louisville Cardinal Challenge in Simpsonville, Kentucky this weekend. The field is much more competitive with six teams currently in the top 50. Two other Louisiana schools are participating in the tournament with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and down the road rival Louisiana Tech. The Warhawks will have to be at their best to get another top five finish.