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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona weathers the storm

The Arizona men’s golf team had to battle high winds, cold temperatures, freezing rain and hail during its first home meet of the season.

“”The weather won for sure. The weather is just awful,”” said head coach Rick LaRose after the first day. “”It was cold, it’s rainy, it’s windy, we had hail on the green, it was just a bad day. Our boys played good at times, not consistently as good as we need. It isn’t for a lack of trying.””

The Wildcats hosted 13 other teams at the Arizona Intercollegiate, which took place Monday through Tuesday and was won by San Diego State.

Play was suspended after the first day due to darkness. Teams were supposed to finish two rounds on the first day and play their last round during the second day.

The Wildcats had two teams in the match, with a varsity and junior varsity squad.

It’s a rarity the junior varsity team outplayed the varsity team as they finished in third place, shooting 17-over. The varsity team came in tied for fifth place, shooting 27-over.

Senior Stefan Cox led the way for the Wildcats as he finished in second place individually. Cox eventually lost by three shots to Pepperdine’s Andrew Putnam.

“”Huge learning curve for these kids,”” said assistant coach Andy Barnes, on the underclassmen. “”Makes them really realize the value of one shot at a time. Big difference between going through practice and shooting a couple under, and all of a sudden you’re in a competition with (these) weather conditions.””

The underclassmen really stepped up during the second day. After the first day, LaRose was relying heavily on the upperclassmen to carry the load.

“”Our older players got to play a little better. Our young guys, they have no experience,”” LaRose said. “”Have no idea how to play in these kinds of conditions. They never played in when it matters. It’s a learning experience for them.””

The next tournament for the team is Monday in Newport Beach, Calif.

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