Mules golf in the swing of things

Written by Muleskinner Staff

By MARQUIS JONES
Reporter
(WARRENSBURG, Mo., digitalBURG) — With Pertle Springs under construction, the Mules golf team has come out swinging on their first two tournaments of the season. Central Missouri enters the first Golf Coaches Association of America poll ranked No. 7.
In their first event of the season, the Mules golf team captured the team title at the Missouri Southern Invitational. Following up on that strong start, the Mules headed to Denver, Colorado, for the Division II National preview tournament where they finished fifth.
Head coach Tim Poe said the team competed well against national contenders.
“Our fifth place finish at the D-II National Preview was a good finish for us,” Poe said. “Beating Lynn University, who finished second at last year’s National Championship and returned all their players will help give us what we need to compete at the highest level at the end when we need the mental side of our game to be at its best.”
At the D-II National Preview, the Mules had some encouragement following their play as they finished behind three of the top five ranked and one other top 10 in the national ranks.
Poe said juniors and seniors would lead the Mules.
“We will rely on our veteran players to make this season be what we think it can be,” Poe said. “But it will be a total group effort from top to bottom that helps us to achieve our ultimate goal.”
Junior Alex Springer was named MIAA Men’s Golf Athlete of the Week last Wednesday. With rounds of 73, 70 and 71 to finish at two-under par and tied for 14th at the Division II National Preview Tournament, Springer helped the Mules capture a fifth place finish against eight teams ranked in the top 22 nationally.
“Alex Springer, Travis Mays and Teddy Jones have all been great performers for us in their careers,” Poe said. “It is their job to help our new players to feel comfortable both on and off the golf course.”
Alex Springer wasn’t the only Mule to receive MIAA Men’s Golf Athlete of the week. Senior Teddy Jones received the same award Sept. 16 after his performance in the season opener at the Missouri Southern Fall Invitational. That was the second time Jones has received the honor in his career.
Capturing individual honors at the MSSU Invite with a three-round total of five-under par 211, Jones shot a one-over par 73 in the first round. Jones was not done because his next two rounds he finished with 70 (-2) in the second round and 68 (-4) in the third. Jones earned his second career win and helped the Mules to a 23-shot win in the tournament.
“I feel we have gotten off to a good start,” Poe said. “Winning the first MIAA designated tournament is always a big confidence boost to the remainder of the season.
“Our first goal is always to win MIAA Championship, and with three regular season events and the Championship at the end where the points double, it is important to be consistently at the top in the three regular season tournaments.”
The NSIC Fall Invitational is the next time UCM will be back in action Oct. 5 and 6 at the Jewell Golf Club in Lake City, Minnesota. The next MIAA points event of the fall is the Missouri Western Regional Invitational on Oct. 12 and 13 at the St. Joseph Country Club.
Poe said that while the lineup may change by spring, the team plans on winning tournaments.
“We have a great mix of young talent which might change throughout the season,” Poe said. “But I am confident that whichever group is competing, they will play hard and give us a chance to win tournaments.”